Britain’s West Ham United and the Club’s loyal supporters are in Cyprus for the first time for Thursday evening’s UEFA Europa Conference League match with AEK Larnaca.
The Hammers will take on AEK in the coastal city’s 8,058-seater AEK Arena – Georgios Karapatakis. The English side will be cheered on by 1,600 supporters.
On arrival at AEK Arena, the club has said West Ham ticketholders will be asked to present their ticket and photographic identification in the form of a physical Passport.
Copies will not be accepted under any circumstances. And non-compliance or failure to present an original document showing photographic identification of the original purchaser, matching the name on the ticket, will result in entry into AEK Arena being refused.
AEK Larnaca have played 14 matches in Europe this season and competed in all three major competitions – UEFA Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League.
They have scored victories over Partizan, Dnipro-1 and Dynamo Kyiv.
Managed by former Manchester United and Everton boss, David Moyes, West Ham is one of the oldest sides in the game, having been founded in 1895 as Thames Ironworks, before being renamed West Ham United in 1900.
In comparison, AEK is one of the youngest teams in Cypriot football, as it was created in 1994, after a merger of the Pezoporikos and EPA Larnaca teams.
The differences between the two sides are also evident in their finances. According to transfermarkt, the total market value of West Ham’s squad is 471.5 million euros, dwarfing that of AEK’s which stands at 14.25 million euros.
England international, Declan Rice, who has been linked with a big-money move to one of Premier League’s giants this summer, is West Ham’s most expensive player, with his current value reaching 80 million euros.
West Ham have been winners of the FA Cup three times (1964, 1975 and 1980) and runners-up twice (1923 and 2006). The club reached two major European finals, winning the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1965 and finishing runners-up in the same competition in 1976. West Ham also won the Intertoto Cup in 1999. They are one of eight clubs never to have fallen below the second tier of English football.
London calling to AEK Larnaca, who will face West Ham in UECL R16