West Ham vs Astra Giurgiu
2016/17 Europa League Play-Off
Date: Thursday, 25 August 2016,
Kick-Off: 19:45 UK
Venue: London Stadium (London).
West Ham United seek revenge when they host Astra Giurgiu in the second leg of the Europa League qualifiers at the London Stadium on Thursday.
It was Astra who knocked out West Ham from last season’s Europa League qualifiers with a 4-3 aggregate win in the second round. Now with scored tied at 1-1 from the first leg in Giurgiu, the Premier League side will be confident to finish off the job in front of their home crowd.
A penalty from Mark Noble send the Hammers 1-0 up in the final seconds of the first half, but Denis Alibec equalised for the Romanian side in the 83rd minute. Astra were easily the best side throughout the 90 minute and would have won if they were smart in taking the chances that came in their way.
West Ham started their quest for Europa League football in the third qualifying round. They defeated Slovenian football club NK Domzale 4-2 aggregate. They lost the away leg 2-1, but bounced back with a 3-0 win at home in their first ever competitive match at the London stadium.
Astra reached the Europa League play-off after the defeat to FC Copenhagen in the third round of UEFA Champions League. They held the Danes to a 1-1 draw at home and lost 3-0 in the away leg.
West Ham vs Astra Giurgiu: Head-to-Head Stats
Astra defeated West Ham 4-2 on aggregate in the Europa League third qualifying round last season. The first fixture was played in London which finished 2-2 in which Astra fought back to draw level in the final quarter of the match after going two goals down. The return leg in Romania also witnessed West Ham taking an early lead, but Astra strike twice in the first half to earn a priceless 2-1 win.
Astra Giurgiu will go into Thursday’s fixture as unbeaten in three matches against West Ham with 2 draws and a win.
West Ham vs Astra Giurgiu: Prediction
Astra are on a poor run of form at the moment and they have won just once in the last 8 competitive fixtures. They are in the bottom half of their domestic league with 4 points from 5 matches. They are low on confidence and this might play well into the hands of West Ham.
West Ham have improved a lot since the defeat to Astra when they met last season. They are an extremely good side at home and they could win this quite comfortably. I will also go by my correct score prediction of 3-1 at full time whistle.
West Ham vs Astra Giurgiu: Tips
- West Ham to win at 1.36
- Over 2.5 goals at 1.72.