UEFA Europa League Quarter-Final Second-Leg Preview- Bayer Leverkusen

Many West Ham United fans may now be believing that their involvement in this season’s UEFA Europa League just might have ended with last week’s late defeat to Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen. However, we all know what the Hammers are capable of when it comes to crucial European nights in Stratford. They will be hoping that it happens again tonight.

The big task that David Moyes’ men have ahead of them is finding two goals to give them a chance of getting back into the tie, which is a situation that they have never had to deal with in two previous seasons.

Xabi Alonso’s side remain unbeaten in all competitions in the 2023/24 campaign and will want to extend that run, thus ending West Ham’s progress here.

It has to be said though, that momentum is definitely on the side of tonight’s visitors, as they won their first ever title at the weekend with success over SV Werder Bremen, whereas the Irons suffered a major blow in their pursuit of a European place for next season, as they were beaten by Fulham here just four days ago.

Ideally, West Ham would need to score the first goal of the match, otherwise it would make it almost impossible for them to carry on in this year’s competition. However, if they did and the tie ended level on aggregate, then extra-time would be required. If a winner is not found after thirty more minutes have been played, then the outcome will be decided via a penalty shoot-out.

Whoever progresses to the semi-final will face a two-legged encounter against Italian opposition in the shape of either AS Roma or AC Milan with the first-leg due to be played on Thursday 2 May.

Both Emmerson Palmieri and Lucas Paquetá are suspended for this game but, on the plus side for the Hammers’ boss however, is the fact that Jarrod Bowen took part in training on Wednesday and it remains to be seen whether the winger will be involved.

Kurt Zouma and Tomáš Souček were rested for Sunday’s game against Marco Silva’s men and the duo will hope to regain their places here.

Konstantinos Mavropanos suffered a slight injury when these two teams last met and although he was fit enough to start the clash with the Cottagers, the Greek defender was replaced after an hour. If he isn’t risked, then either Aaron Cresswell or Angelo Ogbonna will deputise, while Nayef Aguerd and Ben Johnson are also in contention.

The match is an 8pm kick-off and live coverage is being screened by TNT Sports from 7:30pm. The referee is José María Sánchez.