West Ham manager David Moyes is taking the positives from what was a tough evening for our Hammers in the 1-1 draw with KAA Gent.
The hosts were, for the vast majority, the most dominant as Moyes’ side struggled to get to grips with the game and dictate any of the play.
The Belgium side went into the fixture on very good form so it was to be expected that a stern test would await West Ham, although many will be disappointed that we were second best throughout and lacked a cutting edge when it mattered.
Nayef Aguerd thought he’d given our Hammers an early lead but the goal was chalked off rather harshly for a handball following a VAR review, however we did lead eventually thanks to Danny Ings right on half time.
West Ham took full advantage of a napping Gent defence from a throw in, which Jarrod Bowen then passed across goal for Ings to tap in and give a sense that Moyes’ side would start to take hold of the match.
Following the break West Ham looked more composed and started to show quality on the ball, but just 10 minutes in the hosts levelled through Cuypers, after a well worked one-two to take advantage of lapse defending to swing the game in favour of Gent.
It was from there that the game was very open and West Ham simply struggled to regain control of the proceedings, with the hosts looking the side far more likely to take the lead, however West Ham hung on to secure a draw ahead of next weeks second leg at London Stadium.
David Moyes was understandably frustrated that his side failed to take control of the game and exert any real quality, but overall was happy to be leaving with things all square with all things considered.
“We didn’t play well enough on the ball,” said the Hammers boss to the club’s Official Website.
“But overall, look, would I have taken a draw? All day long, because this is a side who have some momentum, they were seven unbeaten coming into the game, so it was never going to be easy.
“To get the goal, and I have to be honest, we didn’t play well enough to make enough of those opportunities, so getting that goal gave us something to hang on to. Danny Ings is very much a penalty box striker and he proved it tonight.
”I thought we defended okay, but we had to keep it and find a way of getting a second goal.”
Moyes noted that next Thursday is set to be another tough game for our Hammers as we look to advance to the final 4 of the competition, with the Scot reminding us that we have been in a similar position before.
“I remember coming away from Seville and we were disappointed to lose 1-0, but we knew we had a chance,” added Moyes.
“We’d get the crowd behind us and we won it in extra-time. We’ve got a big game next Thursday now to try and reach the semi-finals, so let’s hope we can do that.”