“Special games” | Soucek demands hostile crowd against Leverkusen
Source: Thewesthamway

Tomas Soucek says that the fans will be key if West Ham are to come back against Bayer Leverkusen.

No matter the opposition, no matter the attendance, no matter the score, these European nights are so special. Over the past few seasons, West Ham have created memories that will last a lifetime. Historic wins, trophy success and doing the impossible, these are the moments fans will and players alike will remember for years to come.

With their 2-0 loss last week to Bayer Leverkusen though, West Ham have got it all to do in the second leg. To go through, they need to score at least 2 goals against a team that hasn't lost all season. However, with the fans on their side Tomas Soucek believes that his side can once again do the unthinkable to keep their European tour going.

"We've done it before, so we have to be confident we can do it again," Soucek explained to WHUFC.com. "Against Sevilla, the atmosphere was the best I've ever heard and it was a night to remember. I scored the first goal and Andriy [Yarmolenko] scored the second. It was one of the best nights I have had here."

"We came home and knew it was going to be difficult, because they [Sevilla] were a good side and had won the Europa League three years in a row before that. It was quite tough, but together with the fans we got through it."

"We notice a difference to the fans on European nights, because in the warm-up we feel the atmosphere and that everyone is behind us. We know in European football that the fans are always behind us, even if we are losing. We went to the semi-finals, where we lost to [Eintracht] Frankfurt. We were so disappointed, but we bounced back and won the UEFA Europa Conference League, and then recently we had a great night against SC Freiburg. Hopefully, Thursday will be another special memory."

Surprisingly though, Soucek isn't just looking forward to the support of the East London faithful on Thursday night. He also expects a lot of fans back in home country of the Czech Republic to be watching along and, hopefully, cheering him on. "We don't have any Czech teams left, and we don't have any players left in the Champions League or Europa League outside of West Ham and Leverkusen," he stated.

"There are a few in the Europa Conference League, but none in those two competitions, so everyone in the Czech Republic would like to watch this game."

"I think every Czech in England will support West Ham, and every Czech in Germany will support Leverkusen because of our connections in these games."

"These are special games for Czechs, so I believe everyone will be watching in the restaurants and pubs in Prague and across our country. Hopefully the fans cheering West Ham on will be the happy ones at full-time!"

Injuries, a two goal deficit and suspensions - everything is stacked against our Irons. Everything should look grim for us tomorrow, but you just can't help but get excited. There's that sneaky feeling in the back of every fan's mind that this is going to be one of those historic nights. But then again, it's the hope that kills you.