Vladimir Coufal has admitted ‘almost everything’ went wrong as West Ham’s dreams of winning the Europa League were dashed by Eintracht Frankfurt.
But the Hammers’ no-nonsense right-back refused to blame fellow defender Aaron Cresswell for the red card which swung the semi-final firmly in favor of the Germans.
Cresswell’s dismissal after 19 minutes, for knocking out striker Jens Hauge, marked the turning point, with Frankfurt scoring the only goal of the night through Rafael Santos Borre, and sealing a 3-1 aggregate victory, just five minutes away. later.
Czech international Coufal said: “Almost everything went wrong. It completely changed our game plan. It was difficult for us.
“Unfortunately we also conceded the first goal before the end of the first half. We weren’t in a comfortable position for the second half but we tried to do our best – but for Frankfurt it was was comfortable playing with one more player and they kept the ball.
“They played like a great team. They beat us. They deserve to go a little further in the final and we wish them good luck for the final.
“I didn’t see the situation (red card) in slow motion. I can’t judge exactly what happened, but what do you want me to say?
“Of course he’s disappointed. He helped us in a lot of games, but it certainly wasn’t just his mistake. We could have covered for him and we win and lose together, so it’s nothing to judge for him. .
West Ham’s uplifting European adventure finally ended on a sour note after manager David Moyes was sent off from the touchline for angrily throwing the ball back to a ball boy who had collected it.
Their Champions League ambitions may now be over, but the Hammers still have three Premier League games to play, starting with Norwich on Sunday, as they bid to qualify for some form of European competition again this season. next.
“Everyone knows it’s impossible for us to get a Champions League spot now in the Premier League, it was a great chance for us to play the Champions League next year,” Coufal added.
“Unfortunately, we gave this opportunity to Frankfurt. We have to live with it. We have to be focused until the end of the season and win as many games as possible.
“We still want European football. We will go to Norwich and we have to win, that’s all.
“Compared to what was said in the locker room, what can we say after a defeat in the semi-finals? Every head is down and we’re just trying to find the positive on our way, that’s all.