West Ham made history by clinching their first European trophy since 1965 and their first major silverware since 1980’s FA Cup, as they defeated Fiorentina 2-1 in a thrilling Europa Conference League final in Prague thanks to a late goal by Jarrod Bowen.
The Hammers took the lead in the 62nd minute when Said Benrahma converted a penalty after he was fouled by Nikola Milenkovic. However, the Italian side equalized shortly after through Giacomo Bonaventura, who slotted past Lukasz Fabianski after a clever pass from Lucas Paqueta.
The game looked set for extra time, but Bowen had other ideas. In the final minute of regulation time, he latched onto a brilliant through ball from Paqueta and calmly beat Pietro Terracciano to spark wild celebrations among the West Ham players and fans.
It was a special moment for manager David Moyes, who won his first major trophy in his career and joined Ron Greenwood and John Lyall as West Ham’s only trophy-winning managers. He also secured a place in next season’s Europa League for his team, marking the first time that West Ham will play in Europe for three consecutive seasons.
Moyes was joined on the pitch by his father, David Snr, who has followed his son’s journey throughout the European campaign. Moyes gave his medal to his dad, saying: “He was the first one, I thought I should get it round his neck. He’s watched a lot over the years and I hope he enjoyed it.”
The victory was also a fitting farewell for captain Declan Rice, who is expected to leave the club in the summer. Rice emulated club legends Bobby Moore and Billy Bonds by lifting a major trophy for West Ham.