UEFA made the announcement we’ve all be waiting for this morning – England have been awarded an extra Europa League spot for next season via the Fair Play League.
That means that West Ham are on course for a spot in next year’s competition, with the Hammers occupying second in the Premier League league’s fair play table with three games remaining.
Liverpool currently lead the way but as they’ll undoubtedly qualify for finishing fifth, the spot will go down to the next team that hasn’t already qualified – West Ham United. Everton are just behind us in third, so we’ve go to be really, really careful between now and the end of the season.
Although there is the belief that playing in the Europa League can seriously hinder a team’s form in the league over a season (just look at Everton this term), it’s still an exciting prospect to be playing in Europe just a few seasons after coming back up from the Championship.
And what’s more exciting, and romantic, is that the Boleyn Ground could still play host to its final ever European night at some stage next season before we move to the Olympic Stadium.
That said, with Europa League qualification almost in the bag, it means next season could be one hell of a long one. We’ll go in to the first qualifying round of the competition, which is normally played as early as July, so let’s hope the club get their act together and sort out this managerial issue and next invest wisely to ensure we have a squad capable of playing from July to May in as many as four different competitions.
Here’s how the fans reacted to the news…
West Ham on course for Europa League after England receives fair play place http://t.co/Tz7jF4j6uS
— Guardian sport (@guardian_sport) May 8, 2015
— WestHamWorld.co.uk (@WestHamWorld) May 8, 2015
I don't care if we lose 5-0 to Aston Villa just prevent the yellow and red cards please lads @whufc_official
— Jack Lebeau (@JackLebeau66) May 8, 2015
Watching Matt Jarvis, Carlton Cole, Kevin Nolan and Joey O'brien on thursdays on ITV4!
— Dan McCarthy (@DanielGMcCarthy) May 8, 2015
Hopefully the chance of European football might entice a decent manager to the club #coyi
— Martyn Phelps (@witter_dad) May 8, 2015
— bet365 (@bet365) May 8, 2015
Westham in Europe, carnage
— Jennings (@jackwesthamutd) May 8, 2015
I'd happily finish 15th if it meant we have a good run in Europe
— Jack Hobson (@HammersHobson) May 8, 2015
West Ham very likely to be in Europa next year!!! Best news of the year
— James Suth™ ⚒ (@Jamessuth95) May 8, 2015
— RUSTYHAMMER (@DeanoTy) May 8, 2015
oh European away days are looking promising
— 父 (@claretandblue_) May 8, 2015
Don't let this slip @whufc_official
Please please please tell me West Ham are in Europe?!?!
— Steve (@SteveSturdyy) May 8, 2015