2023 Conference League Final preview: Fiorentina vs. West Ham
Picks and predictions of the second-ever Conference League Final
History is about to be made as the winner of the second UEFA Europa Conference League title will be decided in Prague. Italian side Fiorentina will battle things out against English side West Ham at the biggest stage as both teams aim to win their first-ever European title in the era of the UEFA. Both teams have won only one major European trophy in their history, so this is the time for either team to take a step toward success in the coming years. A chance to participate in the Europa League next season is a luxury for either team, as they did not qualify by default at the end of their regular season. Here’s a preview and predictions of the upcoming Conference League Final 2023.
When and where is the UEFA Conference League Final 2023?
Match: Fiorentina Vs West Ham
Date: Wednesday, June 7, 2023
Time: 21:00 CEST (Central European Summer Time)
Venue: Fortuna Arena, Prague, Czech Republic
Preview of Fiorentina Vs West Ham 2023 Conference League Final
West Ham United, a stalwart of the English Premier League, finds themselves at the apex of their European campaign on the grand platform of the Conference League Final. The Hammers, under the charismatic leadership of their manager David Moyes, have overcome numerous obstacles to reach the decisive championship match. One of the most renowned clubs in Italy, Fiorentina, will be playing against them. The Viola have a long history in football, especially in Serie A, and now they have advanced to the final because of their outstanding technical ability and tactical understanding throughout the competition. Let’s examine how these teams secured their places in the finals.
Fiorentina has made history by becoming the first team to advance to the championship match of each of the four major UEFA knockout tournaments: the European Cup/UEFA Champions League, UEFA Cup/UEFA Europa League, UEFA Europa Conference League, and the now-defunct European Cup Winners’ Cup, which they won in 1961. Although they had an average season in the Serie A this season, as they finished eighth and missed out on European competitions by default, Fiorentina will not play European football next season unless they win the Conference League finals. Here’s a look at Fiorentina’s journey to the final.
- Fiorentina was in Group A to kick off the tournament. They won four games, lost one, and the last one ended in a draw to progress to the round of 32 with thirteen points, as they emerged second in Group A. Fiorentina played Braga in the round of 32 and won 7-2 on aggregate to advance to the round of 16.
- In the round of 16, Fiorentina was up against Sivaspoor and ended up winning 5-1 on aggregate to head on to the quarter-finals. In the quarter-finals, Fiorentina faced Lech Poznan, and they ended up winning 6-4 over the two legs.
- In the semi-final, Fiorentina played Basel, and it was the biggest challenge they faced in their run in the competition. Basel won the first leg away from home 2-1 and left Fiorentina with a one-goal deficit to overcome away from home. Fiorentina did well in Switzerland to come back and win 3-1 to bring the aggregate to 4-3 and book their spot in the finals.
West Ham United
West Ham had a terrible season in the Premier League this season. They finished 14th and barely escaped being dragged into the relegation battle; winning the Conference League finals will shine a bright light on their abysmal season. However, their form in the League did not translate to their form in Europe. West Ham tore up the Europa Conference League with big wins and dominant performance, and after a few games in the group stage, they were already seen as favorites to win it all. Here’s how their dominant run to the final went.
- West Ham were in Group B to start their campaign in the 2022-23 Europa Conference League competition. They won all six games in the group stage to claim maximum points and finish top of the group. They progressed straight to the round of 16 to play AEK Larnaca, who they dominated on both legs with a 6-0 score on aggregate.
- In the quarter-finals, West Ham were up against Gent. Gent held West Ham at home to a 1-1 draw, but the Hammers responded in the second leg, winning 4-1 conveniently to book their spot in the semi-finals.
- West Ham faced AZ Alkmaar in the semi-finals and won both legs on aggregate 3-1 to play in their first European finals since 1976. West Ham faces a formidable opponent in Fiorentina. Will they remain perfect in their final Conference League game?
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Fiorentina Vs West Ham United expected lineup
- GK: Terracciano
- LB: Biraghi
- CB: Milenković
- CB: Quarta
- RB: Dodô
- CDM: Amrabat
- CM: Mandragora
- CM: Bonaventura
- LW: González
- RW: Ikoné
- ST: Cabral
Fiorentina Team News: Salvatore Sirigu is ruled out for this game.
West Ham United
- GK: Aréola
- LB: Cresswell
- CB: Zouma
- CB: Aguerd
- RB: Kehrer
- CDM: Rice
- CM: Paquetá
- CM: Souček
- RW: Bowen
- LW: Benrahma
- ST: Antonio
West Ham United Team News: Gianluca Scamacca (knee) has been ruled out for the final.
Fiorentina Vs West Ham 2023 Conference League Finals predictions
- West Ham has been the squad to beat throughout the Conference League, going undefeated and just drawing once. Regardless of the caliber of the opponent they faced, it’s a remarkable achievement and not a fluke as well. Fiorentina might have taken a more challenging route. Still, they have also been dominant in the competition, which leaves us with two evenly-matched teams in this final, despite West Ham being favorites to emerge as champions.
- Both teams have scored quite a handful of goals, so our best pick for this game is on total goals. Fiorentina scored the highest goal in this season’s campaign, 36 goals in fourteen games played; meanwhile, their opponent West Ham scored 27 goals in twelve games in this campaign. This game will be high-scoring.
Pick: Over 2.5 total goals
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