Gift Orban's Gent crash out of UECL after second-half goal blitz by West Ham

Published: April 20, 2023
Gift Orban's Gent crash out of UECL after second-half goal blitz by West Ham

Nigeria striker Gift Orban could not lift his Belgian Pro League side Gent and into the semifinals of the UEFA Europa Conference League Thursday night as they lost 4-1 to Premier League side West Ham United to exit the competition 5-2 on aggregate. 


The first leg had ended in a 1-1 draw in which Orban rattled the frame of the post with an acrobatic effort. 


Orban was presented with his first chance of scoring in the 8th minute of the game at the London stadium when a promising cross was delivered into the West Ham United box. 


The ball came off the shoulder of the Nigerian and bobbled out of play with Hugo Cuypers also hoping to pounce on the opportunity. 


Orban received a yellow card for a foul on West Hsm United 18 minutes into the game. 


The Nigerian striker was involved in the buildup to the first goal of the night scored by Gent's Cuypers in the 26th minute after West Ham's Brazilian midfielder Lucas Pacqueta gave away the ball. 


The Hammers equalised through Michail Antonio as he headed home eight minutes before the half time break from a Jarrod Bowen free kick at the edge of the box. 


Tomáš Souček and Bowen piled pressure on the away side as they struck the bar and rattled the palm of goalkeeper Davy Roef early in the second half. 


The Hammers were awarded a penalty after Kenyan defender Joseph Okumu was deemed by VAR to have handled the ball inside the box. Pacqueta stepped up and converted the spot kick in the 55th minute. 


Declan Rice made it 3-1 just three minutes after Pacqueta's goal after he went on a 60-yard run, evading the attention of the Gent defenders before rifling a low shot to the bottom right corner.


Antonio stunned the Belgians in the 63rd minute as he hit a beautiful shot just inside the box for his 5th strike in six UEFA Conference League matches. 



Izuchukwu Michael



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