West Ham United reached their first European semi-final since 1976 with a clinical 3-0 demolition of Lyon in the second leg of their Europa League quarter-final.
After a 1-1 draw in London last week, Craig Dawson headed home from Pablo Fornals’ corner on 38 minutes to put the Hammers ahead on aggregate.
Skipper Declan Rice extended the lead on the stroke of half-time before Fornals turned provider for Jarrod Bowen to bag the Hammers’ third within minutes of the restart, a finish which secured a date with Eintracht Frankfurt or Barcelona in the semi-finals.
With a backdrop of electric home support, Lyon began the first half purposefully and came closest to opening the scoring when Karl Toko Ekambi struck the woodwork.
Lyon’s inability to finish was punished by a quickfire double from Dawson and Rice which sent the travelling fans into delirium and left the home faithful in stunned silence.
David Moyes’ men began the second half as they finished the first, flying out of the blocks with Bowen netting the Hammers third goal, activating the cruise control setting which ultimately got them over the line.
— West Ham United (@WestHam) April 14, 2022
The final whistle sparked scenes of jubilation and relief among West Ham players, staff and fans alike who are one step closer to the final in Sevilla.
Both sides must switch their focus back to domestic duties now. West Ham will need to climb down from cloud nine and prepare for the visit of Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday. As for Lyon, they’ll need to dust themselves off ready to return to Ligue 1 action when they welcome Bordeaux on Sunday.