West Ham Team News vs Rapid Wien (UEL): Ogbonna, Masuaku

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After the high of defeating Liverpool right before the international break, the Hammers had their bubble burst by Wolverhampton in the last Premier League matchday. The Irons must now switch their focus to the Europa League clash with Rapid Wien.

A victory in Austria against the weakest side in their group will guarantee the high-flying East Londoners a spot in the Europa League knockout stages in the New Year.

The reverse fixture in London on matchday two was comfortable if unspectacular 2-0 victory with Declan Rice and Said Benrahma finding the back of the net. Incredibly, English sides are unbeaten in their last 27 fixtures against Austrian opposition.

The last time an Austrian side defeated an English side was 30 years ago when Arsenal fell to FK Austria Wien 1-0 in the European Cup.

It’s safe to say that all the omens point to a West Ham victory.

Rapid Wien vs West Ham FYIs:

Kick-off time: 6.45 PM Local Time, 25 November Thursday

West Ham Starting XI Prediction: go here

Form Guide (All Competitions): Rapid Wien (WWWLW) West Ham (WWDWL)

 Let’s see how the treatment room in the Olympic Stadium is looking as we head into this one.

As has been the case for the majority of the season so far, the treatment room is not overly populated. The only first-team regular who will definitely miss this one is center-back Angelo Ogbonna.

The Italian defender suffered an ACL injury against Liverpool in the Premier League just prior to the international break and has had to have surgery to repair it. His season is as good as over.

The Italian is considered a lynchpin in defense by his manager and bemoaned his absence in the aftermath of the loss to Wolverhampton in the Premier League.

“A couple of players not really at the level they’ve shown, a couple coming back from illness. We just weren’t quite at the races, the first time playing without Angelo.

There has been some talk that Arthur Masuaku might return to the starting XI for the match against Rapid Wien amidst speculation that David Moyes might experiment with a back five in this Europa League clash.

The Congolese left-sided player has found opportunities hard to come by this season and this could be huge for him if David Moyes decides to go down that route.

For what it’s worth I think that regardless of the shape the West Ham manager decides to go with here, they will account for their Austrian opponents with ease and book their place in the knockout phase of the UEFA Europa League.

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