West Ham United vs Bayer Leverkusen

Bayer Leverkusen will be confident of protecting a 2-0 aggregate lead when they take on West Ham United in the return leg of their Europa League quarter-final tie at the London Stadium.

West Ham’s bid to qualify for back-to-back European finals after conquering the Europa Conference League last season is in jeopardy after conceding twice beyond the 80th minute in Germany. No strangers to overturning first-leg deficits, the Hammers came from behind to dispatch Leverkusen’s fellow Bundesliga rivals Freiburg 5-1 on aggregate in the previous knockout round. But this is a far more arduous task, especially considering West Ham’s patchy nine-game form in all competitions (W2, D3, L4). On the bright side, David Moyes’ men have excelled at home in Europe, winning 14 of their last 17 such games (D1, L2), while they also boast a positive home record against German opposition (W4, L2).

Visiting Bayer Leverkusen will take this trip in a buoyant mood after being crowned the Bundesliga champions for the first time at the weekend off the back of a 5-0 hammering of Werder Bremen. Still the only side in Europe’s top-five leagues yet to lose a competitive game in 2023/24, Xabi Alonso’s men come into proceedings having avoided defeat in all 43 outings this term, winning their last nine matches by a combined score of 22-5. However, England hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for Die Werkself by any stretch of the imagination, as evidenced by their underwhelming record of just one win from their last ten visits to the country (D2, L7).

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