After putting an end to West Ham’s 43-year trophy drought by clinching the Europa Conference League title, David Moyes chose to present his winners’ medal to his father.
In a historic and emotionally charged night in Prague, Jarrod Bowen’s thrilling last-minute goal secured a 2-1 victory over Fiorentina in the Conference League, granting the Hammers their first piece of silverware since the FA Cup in 1980 and their first European trophy since 1965.
David Moyes’ 87-year-old father, David Snr, had accompanied his son throughout West Ham’s European journey and joined him on the pitch following the final whistle.
“He was the first one, I thought I should get it round his neck,” said the jubilant West Ham boss. “He’s watched a lot over the years and I hope he enjoyed it.”
Moyes talks of his ‘incredible journey’ with West Ham
West Ham took the lead with a Said Benrahma penalty in the 60th minute, but their advantage was short-lived as Giacomo Bonaventura quickly equalized with a strike.
However, a pivotal moment came when Jarrod Bowen relentlessly pursued Lucas Paqueta’s long ball, nearly putting David Moyes in a situation reminiscent of Jose Mourinho’s animated touchline antics.
“The moment he went through I was edging down the touchline,” he added. “If it was going to be anyone, I thought ‘this is the moment’.
“But I couldn’t do a full Mourinho knee slide as the grass was a bit dry and I’d have ended up on my belly.”
A place in next season’s Europa League means the club has qualified for Europe three campaigns in a row, for the first time.
“I actually think the last two years have been an incredible journey,” he said.
“It’s an incredible achievement to do so well in Europe, you look at some of the very good teams who find it a struggle. It’s great credit, we’ve turned a disappointing season into a super season.”