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A West Ham side including six homegrown players were narrowly beaten 1-0 by Dinamo Zagreb in their dead rubber final Europa League group game at the London Stadium.

David Moyes took the opportunity to rest most of his first-team squad having already sealed top spot in Group H ahead of the Croatians’ visit, and his young charges, three of whom were making their full debuts for the club, were far from outclassed.

He would have feared for their confidence when Mislav Orsic, whose hat-trick knocked Spurs out of the competition last season, struck another sensational strike from distance with less than three minutes on the clock, but the home side regained their composure and held their own against their far more experienced visitors.

Full-backs Harrison Ashby and Emmanuel Longelo in particular impressed, and the former carved out West Ham’s best opportunity of a game of few chances, finding Sonny Perkins with a pinpoint cross which he nodded over from a good position.

The defeat, West Ham’s first in Europe this season, could not stop them from finishing top in Group H, while Dinamo did enough to ensure they qualify for the play-off round by finishing second, although Genk’s defeat to Rapid Vienna meant any result would have been enough for the Croatians to progress.

More to follow…

When is the draw for the play-off?

The Europa League play-off draw takes place in Nyon, Switzerland on December 13.

The eight sides finishing second in their Europa League group will be seeded and drawn against the eight sides who finished third in their Champions League groups. No team can play a club from their group or any side from their own country.

The sides who finished second in their Europa League groups will play the first leg of their last-16 tie away from home.
The first legs of the play-off ties will be played on February 17, with the return fixtures a week later on February 24.

What’s next?

West Ham travel to face Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday; kick-off 2pm.



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