TalkSPORT pundit thought West Ham goalkeeper was “excellent” in defeat against Bayer Leverkusen

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Bayer Leverkusen seized control of their UEFA Europa League quarter-final clash against West Ham United with a dramatic 2-0 victory at BayArena.

Substitutes Jonas Hofmann and Victor Boniface emerged as the heroes for the Bundesliga leaders, striking late to break The Hammers’ resilient defence.

The match began with West Ham showing promise, crafting a golden opportunity in the 10th minute as Michail Antonio orchestrated a counterattack, setting up Mohammed Kudus whose shot failed to trouble Leverkusen’s goalkeeper, Matej Kovar.

Despite early pressure from the visitors, Leverkusen threatened with Lukasz Fabianski forced into action, denying Alex Grimaldo, Patrik Schick, and Edmond Tapsoba with crucial saves.

The second half saw Leverkusen continue their offensive onslaught, with Fabianski pulling off a remarkable reflex save to keep Schick’s header out in the 70th minute. However, the breakthrough finally arrived in the 83rd minute when Hofmann’s volley navigated its way through a congested penalty area, leaving Fabianski helpless.

With the deadlock broken, Leverkusen pushed for a decisive second goal, which came in stoppage time. Hofmann turned provider, delivering a precise cross that was met by the head of Boniface, who expertly directed the ball into the net, sealing the victory for Xabi Alonso’s side.

Lukasz Fabianski kept West Ham in the tie against Bayer Leverkusen.

West Ham keeper Lukasz Fabianski was “excellent” against Bayer Leverkusen

Although the Hammers were defeated 2-0, Polish international goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski had an “excellent” game. The 38-year-old made an incredible nine saves to keep West Ham in the tie.

TalkSPORT punidt Ray Houghton was impressed with West Ham goalkeeper Lukas Fabianski.

“That’s the first time I’ve seen West Ham played through with one pass, you can see Mavropanos square on and he’s not looked where Hoffman was,” he said on commentary for TalkSPORT.

“The sweeper keeper though, I think he has been excellent tonight Fabianski. He has come out and he read it, he knew he was going to get there first. It looked like he kneed it out of play for a throw-in, but very good goalkeeping from Fabianski again.”

West Ham have it all to do against Leverkusen in the second leg, and Fabianski will have his work cut out once more.

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