West Ham United's cheering players
Photo: Alexandra Fechete / IMAGO
58 years after the coup against the Munich Lions, West Ham United have won another international title. The London club around Bayern dream player Declan Rice and the German national defender Thilo Kehrer won the second edition of the Conference League with a 2-1 (0-0) victory over the Italian club AC Florence.
As a result, West Ham also secured a starting place for the 2023/2024 Europa League season after a disappointing season so far with relegation fears.
The duel in Prague was overshadowed by fan riots. Florence supporters attacked supporters of Londoners in a bar in the city center, according to Czech police. Three people were slightly injured, one of whom was taken to hospital. In addition, the officers have provisionally arrested 16 suspects.
There were also unpleasant scenes in the stadium. For example, Fiorentina captain Cristiano Biraghi was pelted with several drinking cups when he tried to execute a corner. The Italian then bled heavily from the back of his head, but was able to continue the game with a turban.
Said Benrahma from the penalty spot (62') and Jarrod Bowen (90') scored the goals for the Hammers, who had won the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1965 by beating 2 Munich 0-1860 – led by eventual world champions Bobby Moore and Geoff Hurst. For Florence, the interim equalizer by Giacomo Bonaventura (67th) was not enough. As a result, the Serie A club also lost its second final this season, with Inter Milan beating 2-1 in the cup final.
"I'm happy. The fans are freaking out, everyone is freaking out with us. To win a European title is outstanding," Kehrer told Nitro, adding:
"Fiorentina are a good team. The game went back and forth, it was pretty even. In the end, we got it as a unit."
Biraghi, who was injured in the head, was then involuntarily the focus of attention when he conceded the first goal. Because he touched the ball with his hand in a duel with Bowen, referee Carlos del Cerro Grande decided to award a penalty after studying the video. Benrahma put the ball powerfully into the goal.
However, Fiorentina quickly recovered from the shock and equalised through Bonaventura. At that time, Kehrer was already in the game, the former Schalke player was substituted after just over an hour. The decision was made in the last minute when Bowen scored the winning goal.