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West Ham qualify for the Last 16 as they beat Backa Topola

Tomas Soucek scored another late goal as West Ham booked their spot in the Europa League knockout matches at Serbian club Backa Topola.

Tomas Soucek scored another late goal as West Ham booked their spot in the Europa League knockout matches at Serbian club Backa Topola.

Soucek’s Late Heroics

In a match that initially lacked spark for David Moyes’ side, Tomas Soucek’s crucial header off Maxwel Cornet’s cross changed the tone. Soucek’s fifth goal in as many games for club and country, especially scoring in three consecutive West Ham fixtures for the first time, secured the win, each goal coming later than the 88th minute.

West Ham’s Impressive European Streak

Soucek’s goal not only sealed the win but also marked West Ham’s 20th successive European game where they have found the net. Their record stands at 18 wins and only one defeat, showcasing their dominance and consistency on the European stage.

Top of Group A and Eyes on Top Spot

With this victory, Moyes’ team claims the top spot in Group A. To secure their place without going through a playoff in February against a third-place Champions League side, West Ham only need a point against Freiburg on December 14th.

Moyes’ Delight and Forward Focus

David Moyes expressed his joy at West Ham’s progression, praising the team’s impending third consecutive European campaign after Christmas. He highlighted the significance of the upcoming clash against Freiburg, acknowledging their quality and the necessity for a strong performance from his side.

A Season’s Success

Reflecting on the season’s journey, Moyes expressed contentment, stating that even finishing second in the group would have been acceptable at the beginning of the season. However, with the team’s impressive run, securing top spot becomes a target they aim to achieve against a strong Freiburg side.

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