Moyes calls on West Ham to ‘keep fighting’ with Frankfurt hangover fear erased


avid Moyes hailed his West Ham players for their response to Thursday’s Europa League heartbreak and vowed to push Manchester United all the way in the race to qualify for next season’s tournament.

The Hammers were knocked out at the semi-final stage after a 1-0 defeat away to Eintracht Frankfurt earlier this week, but bounced back by hammering Norwich 4-0 in the Premier League on Sunday.

The victory sees Moyes’ side close the gap to sixth-placed Man United to just three points having played a game fewer, with goal difference also now strongly in their favour after Ralf Rangnick’s side were hammered 4-0 by Brighton on Sunday.

Finishing seventh would secure a return to Europe in the Europa Conference League but this weekend’s results have rekindled hope that the second tier competition may still be within reach.

“We’ve got to try,” Moyes said. “Let’s be fair, we’ve got Manchester City and Brighton [left to play], they’re not easy, Brighton have just beaten Manchester United.

“That’s why I thought today was really important to get the three points and we’re back in it, back in fighting, back in trying to be sixth or seventh with a bit of luck and hopefully we’ll be back in Europe.”

Said Benrahma got the Hammers off to a flying start at Carrow Road with a 12th-minute opener and also struck in first-half stoppage time after Michail Antonio had doubled the lead in between, with Manuel Lanzini’s penalty completing the scoring after the break.

Moyes admitted afterwards he had feared a hangover from the exit in Frankfurt but was delighted with his players’ display.

“I did [worry], I think most people would,” the Scot said. “We just played Thursday, we only got back Friday afternoon, had to drive here Saturday afternoon and then play today.

“A big blow doesn’t do [how we feel] justice so to get back today and get a result was great credit to the players, we did a lot of good things.

“I’ve got to say I think we could’ve played better, we could’ve scored more goals, but we also got a couple of decisions go for us as well which sometimes you need. We’ll take it, we’ve not had many decisions go for us in the last few months. We got the job done and took three big points.”

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