The European dreams of West Ham United were brought to an end on Thursday evening, at the hands of an impressive Eintracht Frankfurt outfit.
On the back of a 2-1 defeat in the first-leg of the semi-final showdown between the two clubs last week, the Irons made the trip to Germany, no doubt hopeful of another memorable night on the continent.
When all was said and done at the Deutsche Bank Park, however, the evening’s visitors were simply outplayed, on their way to an eventual 1-0 defeat, and ensuing exit from the Europa League.
The game’s telling moment was forthcoming with 25 minutes on the clock, as a trademark move on the part of Eintracht saw Ansgar Knauff slipped in behind to tee up a simple finish for the superb Rafael Borré:
Rafael Borré is on hand for the finish.
Frankfurt take the lead over 10-men West Ham. pic.twitter.com/7U0xnMktcU
— CBS Sports Golazo ⚽️ (@CBSSportsGolazo) May 5, 2022
A finale showdown with Scottish giants Rangers now lies in wait, after Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s troops got the better of another Bundesliga outfit – in the form of RB Leipzig.
Kevin Trapp – 6 – Dealt with what little he had to in confident fashion.
Tuta – 6 – A quiet evening for Tuta, who saw out the 90 minutes in comfortable fashion, keeping Fornals and co. in check.
Martin Hinteregger – N/A – Lasted less than ten minutes before being forced to succumb to a hamstring injury.
Evan NDicka – 6.5 – A needless yellow card picked up for a heavy challenge on Antonio was the only blemish on an otherwise fine display from Eintracht’s in-demand young defender.
Ansgar Knauff – 7 – Another telling contribution in teeing up Borre’s opener, Knauff continues to shine on the continent.
Djibril Sow – 7.5 – Excellent in his deep-lying midfield role throughout, keeping things ticking over whilst offering support for his backline when needed, too.
Sebastian Rode – 7 – Like partner Sow, proved key in ensuring that Eintracht remained on top in the battle for supremacy in the middle of the park.
Filip Kostic – 7.5 – The home side’s key outlet down the left flank throughout, Kostic’s directness and crossing ability mean that he is simply always a threat.
Jens Peter Hauge – 7 – Worthy of his introduction to the starting XI, linked midfield to attack in fine fashion, particularly in the first-half. Made the run that led to Cresswell’s dismissal.
Daichi Kamada – 6 – Fell short in his efforts to emulate a Man of the Match display at the London Stadium.
Rafael Borré – 7.5 – Netted the game’s telling goal courtesy of a clever piece of movement and controlled finish. Linked play superbly courtesy of clever decision-making, too.
Almamy Tour – 6.5 – Introduced in place of Hinteregger early on, and ensured that his side did not miss a beat without their influential defensive stalwart.
Kristijan Jakic – 5 – Had little impact in his fifteen minutes on the pitch as Eintracht sat back to see out the result.
Goncalo Paciencia – N/A
Ajdin Hrustic – N/A
Alphonse Areola – 5.5 – Could do little to prevent Eintracht’s winner. Otherwise solid.
Vladimir Coufal – 5 – Afforded a predictably tough evening by the ever-lively Kostic, but at least assured that the hosts’ gifted wide-man did not run riot. Solid if unspectacular.
Craig Dawson – 5 – Guilty of losing track of Borre for the game’s only goal.
Kurt Zouma – 6 – The best of West Ham’s defense on the night, Zouma can count himself unlucky to have been on the losing side in Germany.
Aaron Cresswell – 1 – A completely needless last-man red card set the stage for his side’s eventual defeat. Cresswell has now been sent off in two of his last three European appearances.
Tomas Soucek – 4.5 – Struggled to have any sort of positive impact on proceedings, as Eintracht dominated he exchanges in the middle of the park.
Declan Rice – 5.5 – Did his best to drive the away side forward, but ultimately to no avail. A disappointing end to what could prove Rice’s final European adventure with West Ham.
Jarrod Bowen – 5 – Dangerous set-piece delivery aside, Bowen was kept largely in check on a difficult evening for all of West Ham’s attackers.
Manuel Lanzini – 4 – Hooked on the 20-minute mark as David Moyes was forced to shuffle his pack on the back of Cresswell’s dismissal.
Pablo Fornals – 5 – Struggled through no major fault of his own to get involved in the attacking third. Hauled off 20 minutes from time.
Michael Antonio – 6.5 – West Ham’s best performer on the night. Worked tirelessly in his lone striker role, showingcasing quality in his rare opportunities on the ball whilst keeping the hosts’ defense honest throughout.
Ben Johnson – 5.5 – One of West Ham’s better performers on the night, slotted in at left-back after Cresswell’s dismissal and did not shy away from the threat posed by Knauff.
Said Benrahma – 5 – Lively, but ultimately failed to have the desired impact after being introduced off the bench late on.
Andriy Yarmolenko – N/A
What the players said
— Pablo Fornals (@pablofornals) May 5, 2022
Gotted. We’re gutted in there.”
“We’ve given everything this year.”
“The sending off was a sending off, but some of the other decisions were poor.”
As always Declan Rice wears his heart on his sleeve. You can see how much this one hurts.
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) May 5, 2022
What the fans said
We cannot start next season with Antonio, Cresswell, and Fabianski as members of our strongest XI. Soucek is close to being on that list, also. Squad needs improvements in quality and depth.
— Andrew Kane (@AndrewKane221) May 5, 2022
Despite defeat, shows how far West Ham as a club have come from fighting relegation two years ago to be genuinely disappointed at not progressing to a European final. Amazing achievement. Very proud effort for the club. European football next season is an absolute must.
— Josh V (@WestHamJoshV) May 5, 2022
Antonio and rice are the only ones who can come out of this game proud. Cresswell do one
— Sills (@SillsBills) May 5, 2022
Incredible! Congratulations, guys!
— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) May 5, 2022
You made us proud
— navy blue (@ilikepopmusicvm) May 5, 2022
ALL of football is behind you
— aidan (@aidanusername) May 5, 2022
What you may have missed
Incredible pre-match scenes inside the Deutsche Bank Park.
— Get German Football News (@GGFN_) May 5, 2022
Click here to view our latest Premier League betting tips.
The Premier League table as it stands
|7||West Ham United||35||15th||7||13||53||46||7||52|
|9||Brighton & Hove Albion||35||10||14||11||34||42||-8||44|
Last updated: 1 min ago
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What time is kick off between Eintracht Frankfurt vs West Ham United?
19:00, Thursday 05 May 2022