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Mark Noble Cites West Ham Fans Influence as Key to Europa League Win

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By Martin Graham | 21st Mar 2022

Captain of West Ham United, Mark Noble, said that the fans of the club were very influential in their victory over Sevilla in the UEFA Europa League round of 16.

Sevilla were beaten 2-1 on aggregate by West Ham in the UEFA Europa League round of 16 tie. The Hammers lost 1-0 at the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan and secured a famous 2-0 win over the competition’s most successful side at the London Stadium in the return leg.

Noble, who started the game from the bench and came on in extra time, noted that the atmosphere at the London Stadium helped propel him and his teammates to a great performance which saw them dump Sevilla out of the Europa League.

Tomáš Souček’s first-half header and Andriy Yarmolenko‘s extra time goal helped secure progression to the next round for the London side.

Speaking to West Ham TV, Noble, an 18-year veteran of the club, said it was a night he will never forget.

“It was an incredible night,” he said. “I take my hat off to the support that was in here tonight, it was incredible.

“The fans knew what we needed to get through, to support the players and the noise was phenomenal. I really believe that’s what got us over the line tonight.

“It’s a case of a group of players who are so close and so tight-knit that pull in the right direction for one another. We’ve got some outstanding players as well – and you’ve got to remember that we’ve missed Jarrod Bowen these last two ties.

“It’s phenomenal and for me personally to witness this tonight is just incredible and I really believe we can do something special.”

Noble commends Yarmolenko mental tenacity amid Ukraine crisis

Yarmolenko, the match-winner for West Ham, is currently playing with a burden on his shoulders as his home country is under invasion by Russian forces on the orders of Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Noble praised the Ukrainian, who in the space of two games, came off the bench to score vital goals for his team.

“If you look at what’s happened in the last week with Yarma he could have easily stayed at home, and none of us can even think about what’s happening to him, his family and his country.

“Yarma has come on in the last two games, been a team player and got us the goal at the weekend and got the goal to send us through in this tie.

“I take my hat off to him and will be forever grateful. He’ll always stay in my memory for this night. He’s been unselfish, sat on the bench tonight, come on and scored the goal we needed. I will be forever grateful to him.”

Noble thanks West Ham fans and staff for send-off

Noble also expressed gratitude to the fans and the West Ham handlers for giving them an opportunity to participate in such a night.

“I got goosebumps when I ran on and heard the noise,” he added. “For me to go out on a season like this – I’ve given everything to this club for 20 years since I was an eleven-year-old kid.

“I’ve taken everything home with me and it hasn’t always been rosy. It’s been tough at times but I’ve done my best to drag the players and the Club through those tough times.

“It’s not finished yet, but to finish on a season like this is so special. I can only thank the staff and players for giving me such a nice send off, but like I said it’s not over yet.”

Noble will be leaving West Ham at the end of the season after 18 years with the senior team. He will also be the captain if West Ham manage to scale every hurdle left in the Europa League to win the trophy.

They have been drawn to face Olympique Lyonnais in the quarterfinals and have been put in the same bracket as Eintracht Frankfurt and Barcelona who will be doing battle to face the winner of the West Ham-Lyon tie.

Martin Graham is an MFF sports writer

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