September 17, 2021

Dinamo Zagreb vs West Ham preview: Hammers debuts in Croatia?

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Team news and stats ahead of Dinamo Zagreb vs West Ham in the Europa League group stage on Thursday; kick-off 5.45pm.

Team news

West Ham summer signings Alphonse Areola, Kurt Zouma, and Alex Kral could be handed their debuts for the club in Zagreb.

Club captain Mark Noble, Ryan Fredericks, Issa Diop, Manuel Lanzini and Andriy Yarmolenko could all get minutes under their belt in Croatia.

Defender Arthur Masuaku (knee) remains the Hammers’ only injury concern.

Dinamo Zagreb will be without goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic, meaning Danijel Zagorac should deputise. Forward Mario Gavranovic and defender Dino Peric are also out, but captain Arijan Ademi is back.

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How to follow

Follow Dinamo Zagreb vs West Ham with our dedicated live blog across Sky Sports’ digital platforms.

Opta stats

  • Dinamo Zagreb and West Ham United have never faced previously in European competition. Zagreb have faced English opponents on 17 previous occasions in Europe (including qualifiers) and lost 11 of these games (W3 D3), though they beat Tottenham 3-0 in their most recent game against English opposition in last season’s Europa League.
  • West Ham have only faced one Croatian opponent before, winning 6-1 on aggregate against NK Osijek in the UEFA Cup first round in September 1999.
  • Dinamo Zagreb are unbeaten in their last 13 UEFA Europa League group stage matches (W9 D4), winning their last four in a row and only conceding once in their last eight such games.
  • West Ham haven’t competed in major UEFA European competition (excluding qualifiers) since the 2006-07 UEFA Cup (losing 4-0 on aggregate to Palermo in the first round) and haven’t won any of their last four such games, all in the UEFA Cup between 1999 and 2006, failing to score in all four. The last side they did score against were Croatian opponents NK Osijek, winning 3-1 with goals from Paul Kitson, Neil Ruddock and Marc-Vivien Foe in 1999.
  • West Ham manager David Moyes hasn’t managed in European competition since 2013-14 as Manchester United manager, leading them to the UEFA Champions League quarter-final before losing to Bayern Munich. In the UEFA Europa League, his last match came in February 2010 with Everton, losing 3-0 to Sporting Lisbon in the last 32 second leg, going out 4-2 on aggregate.

When are the Europa League group stage games?

Matchday 1: September 16 2021
Matchday 2: September 30 2021
Matchday 3: October 21 2021
Matchday 4: November 4 2021
Matchday 5: November 25 2021
Matchday 6: December 9 2021

All the key Europa League dates

Round of 16: March 10 & 17 2022
Quarter-finals: April 7 & 14 2022
Semi-finals: April 28 & May 5 2022
Final: May 18 2022 (Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium, Seville)