Europa League: Said Benrahma double sees West Ham through to knockout round

West Ham United are through to the Europa League knockout rounds after a 2-2 draw against Genk.

Said Benrahma netted twice in the second half but Tomas Soucek’s late own goal prevented the Hammers from coming away with all three points.

The point guarantees West Ham’s place in the round of 32, and they need just one point from their final two games to finish top of Group H and receive a bye into the round of 16.

It was Genk who took an early lead when Joseph Paintsil raced past the backline before beating Alphonse Areola.

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Genk could have doubled their lead too. First, Bryan Heynen’s header was tipped over before Paul Onuachu and Junya Ito squandered good chances.

West Ham improved massively in the second half though, and were level when Benrahma turned the ball home after good work down the right by Manuel Lanzini and Vladimir Coufal.

Benrahma thought he had won the game for West Ham with 10 minutes remaining when he went past Mujaid Sadick before scoring at the near post.

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But Genk hit back through Soucek’s own goal when he deflected Angelo Preciado’s cross past Areola.

“I think on reflection a draw is the right result. Genk started better and we needed our keeper to make some good saves,” West Ham manager David Moyes said.

“In the end we got two goals and it looked like it would be enough but for the own goal. Lots of credit to Genk.

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“I look at it that we’ve qualified, and the other part of it is we’re still new to this. We are trying to keep players fresh for the Premier League, so somewhere along the line it was going to get bumpy. And Genk made it bumpy.”

West Ham now turn their attention towards Sunday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool.

Cover Photo: “London Stadium” by diamond geezer is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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