Hi I am Scott Kelly and I will be bringing you action from the latest match day in the UEFA Europa League as West Ham travel to the Austrian capital and to the Allianz Stadion to face Rapid Vienna.Embed from Getty Images
There are no fans in the stadium this evening due to Austria’s current lockdown as a result of a huge rise of COVID-19 cases in the country.
The home side currently sit 5th in the Austrian Bundesliga and come into this game following a weekend win over Altach in the league and come into this on the back of a 2-1 victory against Dinamo Zagreb in their last European outing.
The visitors come into this on the back of a 1-0 reverse at Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday. Goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski and Michail Antonio appear to have been given the night off. Manager David Moyes has made eight changes in total, with only Craig Dawson, Tomas Soucek and Jarrod Bowen retaining their places from Saturday’s defeat.
The away side have 10 points from their opening four games and have the chance to book their place in the last 32 and will guarantee top spot in Group H with victory tonight. Whilst Die Grun-Weiben can still qualify and an upset tonight will put them in an excellent position going into the final group game. A defeat however all but ends hopes of qualification.Embed from Getty Images
1′ – The game is underway.
5′ – Some corners for both sides in the early proceedings but nothing to worry either defence with the Hammers easily clearing the hosts first corner.
7′ – West Ham are having some joy down the wings early on as a Vladimir Coufal cross early on doesn’t reach anybody and Arthur Masuaku ends up with it on the left and Bowen can only have his attempt at goal blocked and it is cleared.
11′ – Nikola Vlasic twists and turns inside the Rapid Vienna box, but he can only put his attempt over the cross bar.Embed from Getty Images
16′ – Coufal puts the ball out so Rapid Vienna’s Taxiarchis Fountas can receive a little bit of treatment. Subs are warming up as a precaution. It gives both managers an opportunity to give out some instructions to their players.
20′ – Rapid Vienna’s Koya Kitigawa cuts the ball back to Fountas and he looks to bend the ball around 25 yards out but his left footed effort goes wide and out for a goal kick.
29′ – As we approach the half hour mark, West Ham have controlled this without creating an opportunity of any note and this appears to be giving the home side more encouragement.Embed from Getty Images
35′ – Rapid Vienna building up some confidence here as Ljubicic plays in Moormann, who whips a ball into the area as the away side struggle to clear, it falls to Arase whose tempting pull back is eventually cleared.
40′ – GOAL FOR WEST HAM! Rapid Vienna 0-1 WEST HAM Its been coming and the Hammers have found it too easy to put crosses in this evening and its finally Rapid Vienna’s undoing. A fantastic cross from Nikola Vlasic is far too tempting for Andriy Yarmolenko as he heads past Vienna goalkeeper Paul Gartler. That is Yarmolenko’s first Hammers goal of the season and his first since a 4-0 victory over Doncaster in the FA Cup back in January.Embed from Getty Images
42′ – A chance again for West Ham as Bowen is fed through brilliantly and Gartler has to come out to scupper what would’ve been an easy finish for the former Hull man.
45+1′ – PENALTY FOR WEST HAM. There was one minute of stoppage time added but The Hammers have won themselves a penalty in that period. Yarmolenko tries to turn but gets a knock on his right leg following a challenge from Maximilian Hoffman. There is no doubt and despite a quick VAR check, the penalty is given.
45+2′ – GOAL FOR WEST HAM! Rapid Vienna 0-2 WEST HAM. Mark Noble steps up and despatches past Gartler, despite the goalkeeper going the right way. The Hammers have a second and are well on their way to topping the group this evening.Embed from Getty Images
HALF TIME: RAPID VIENNA 0-2 WEST HAM UNITED
46′ – The second half is underway.
48′ – Rapid Vienna go forward with Austrian U21 international Kelvin Arase, who plays a very inviting ball into the area but no one can finish it off. The ball is eventually cleared.
53′ – The home side again with a good period of possession but continue to be stifled by the West Ham defence, who easily put a stop to it.
55′ – Good bit of play from Rapid Vienna as a result of West Ham giving the ball away. Some good interplay between Kitigawa and Fountas and the latter puts an attempt over the bar.Embed from Getty Images
56′ – Good chance for the Hammers as Lanzini plays through Bowen, who beats the keeper but his effort his blocked by a defender, it later ends up at Bowen again but Gartler does well to pounce on the ball and he eventually claims it.
60′ – Double change from Vienna on the hour mark. Marko Grull and Ercan Kara are on for Christophe Knasmuller and Koya Kitigawa.
61′ – A bit of pinball in the Vienna penalty area as Tomas Soucek has a header saved by Gartler, then Bowen has a thumping effort which is stopped brilliantly on the line by Filip Stojkovic. The Hammers very unfortunate not to be further ahead.
70′ – Vlasic plays a good one two with Yarmolenko and the Ukrainian has an attempt at goal but he is flagged offside. West Ham seeing out this game very well. They seem content with just keeping the ball and frustrating the home side.
73′ – Greek international Fountas is fed by Arase and he will be frustrated to see his effort go just over the bar from just outside the penalty area
76′ – A sub for the home side as lively winger Kelvin Arase is replaced by 19 year old Chelsea loanee Thierno Ballo.
79′ – Perkins with nearly the dream debut as he meets a cross and his header, although straight at the goalkeeper, has power and Gartler is forced to tip it over the crossbar.
83′ – Ballo picks up the ball just outside the West Ham penalty area after a good pass from Stojkovic. His rasping drive is always rising and goes over Alphonse Areola’s crossbar.
86′ – It could be argued that their shooting has let Rapid Vienna down tonight as Fountas picks up the ball 25 yards from goal and again his effort goes over the crossbar.Embed from Getty Images
89′ – Rapid Vienna work the ball in the area and an acrobatic effort from Grull goes over the crossbar.
90′ – There will be three minutes of stoppage time to be played.
90+1 – Fountas and Robert Ljubicic have been replaced and Oliver Strunz and Srdjan Grahovic come on.
FULL TIME: RAPID VIENNA 0-2 WEST HAM UNITEDEmbed from Getty Images
A thoroughly professional performance you could say from West Ham as they seal qualification and also win their group, courtesy of goals from Andriy Yarmolenko and a Mark Noble penalty. Their final group game against Dinamo Zagreb could be the perfect opportunity to play some youngsters, particularly Sonny Perkins who had a great chance to score and was getting into good positions. Manchester City next for the Hammers at the weekend in the Premier League.