West Ham are into the Europa League semi-finals and play their first game on Thursday, but how has the club done in previous European (Europa League equivalent) campaigns?
1964-65 European Cup Winners’ Cup
In West Ham’s first-ever European campaign after winning the FA Cup the previous year, the Hammers went all the way to the final before facing West German side 1860 Munich in front of a 100,000-strong crowd at Wembley.
The Hammers eventually won the game 2-0, courtesy of two goals from Alan Sealey. This gave West Ham their only European victory to date, with the hope they can secure another this season.
1965-66 European Cup Winners’ Cup
After winning the tournament the year before, the Hammers reached the semi-finals this time around.
However, they lost 5-2 on aggregate to eventual winners Borussia Dortmund and lost out on playing a final against fellow English side Liverpool.
1975-76 European Cup Winners’ Cup
Following a nine-year break from the competition, West Ham returned in 1975 after winning the FA Cup.
Again the Hammers went far into the competition, reaching the final for a second time, but eventually lost out on the trophy after losing 4-2 to Belgian side Anderlecht in their last fixture.
Coincedently, West Ham faced Eintracht Frankfurt in the semi-finals, beating them 4-3 on aggregate. Forty-six years later, they must beat the German outfit once again to reach a European final.
1980-81 European Cup Winners’ Cup
After winning the 1980 FA Cup, West Ham qualified for the european competition despite being a second-tier club.
We reached the quarter-finals before unfortunately losing 4-2 on aggregate to Georgian side Dinamo Tbilisi.
1999-00 UEFA Cup
After winning the 1998-99 Intertoto Cup, a third European-tier competition, West Ham were granted access into the then named UEFA Cup, which is now known as the Europa League.
Unfortunately, our cup run ended shortly after the first round, losing to Romanian side Steaua Bucharest 2-0 on aggregate in the second stage of the competition.
2006-07 UEFA Cup
Because the Hammers were runners-up in the FA Cup in 2006, the club entered the 2006-07 UEFA Cup.
However, this cup run ended abysmally worse than the previous years, crashing out at the hands of Palermo in the first round – losing 4-0 on aggregate.
2015-16 Europa League
West Ham qualified for the 2015-16 Europa League season after winning the financial fair play table in the 2014-15 campaign, a rule that is no longer in use.
Entering the first round of qualifying, the Hammers reached the third qualifying stage before shockingly losing to Romanian side Astra Giurgiu 4-3 on aggregate.
2016-17 Europa League
Finally, West Ham’s last previous European campaign before this season’s came in 2016-17 after finishing 7th in the league table.
The Hammers, under Slaven Bilic, again bowed out of the competition before reaching the group stages, losing 2-1 on aggregate to Astra Guirgiu for a second year running, this time in the play-offs.
Hopefully this season, having reached the Europa League semi-finals, West Ham can move on from their recent poor European record and finally give supporters something more to cheer about – just as they have done already this season.
David Moyes and the squad are chasing the club’s first European trophy since 1965, and this Thursday’s fixture against Eintracht Frankfurt is the most important match in the club’s recent history.