For the 2021-22 season, Leicester City and West Ham United represented the Premier League in the UEFA Europa League. West Ham won their group and advanced to the Round of 16, but Leicester City failed to advance and fell into the Europa Conference League. Groundhopper Soccer Guides is tracking match schedules, progress, and opponents in this post.
The 2021-22 Europa League group stage action, in which both Leicester City and West Ham entered the tournament, began September 16 and ran through December 9, all on Thursday nights. West Ham won their group and will re-enter the competition for the Round of 16 in March.
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What is the UEFA Europa League?
Simply put, the Europa League is the No. 2 European club competition that takes place each season, sitting behind the Champions League and ahead of the newly created Europa Conference League.
This year marks the 51st season and the 13th since being rebranded from the UEFA Cup to the UEFA Europa League.
With the formation of the Europa Conference League, some changes were made to this season’s Europa League. The group stage was reduced from 48 to 32 teams, and the overall number of participating teams was also reduced.
Read more in our post What is the Europa League.
Leicester City and West Ham United Europa League Group Stage Opponents
Group C was the most competitive group, as all four teams were in position for advancement going into the final day of group stage action. Napoli and Spartak Moscow tied atop the group with 10 points, with Spartak earning the bye into the Round of 16 thanks to a pair of wins over Napoli (3-2, 2-1). By finishing third in the group, with eight points, Leicester City dropped into the Europa Conference League. Legia Warsaw was at the bottom of the group with six points.
West Ham easily won the group with 13 points. The Irons won each of the first three games, and went 4-1-1 in the six games overall. Dinamo Zagreb finished second with 10 points and advanced to the Round of 32 to face Sevilla who dropped from the Champions League. Rapid Wien (6) and Genk (5) rounded out the group.
Europa League Group Stage Results
The entire fixtures list is available at UEFA.com. The first team listed is the home team.
- September 16 – Leicester City vs. Napoli – Tied 2-2
- September 30 – Legia Warsaw vs. Leicester City – Warsaw won 1-0
- October 20 – Spartak Moscow vs. Leicester City – Leicester won 3-2
- November 4 – Leicester City vs. Spartak Moscow – Tied 1-1
- November 25 – Leicester City vs. Legia Warsaw – Leicester won 3-1
- December 9 – Napoli vs. Leicester City – Napoli won 3-2
West Ham United
- September 16 – Dinamo Zagreb vs. West Ham United – West Ham won 2-0
- September 30 – West Ham United vs. Rapid Wien – West Ham won 2-0
- October 21 – West Ham United vs. Genk – West Ham won 3-0
- November 4 – Genk vs. West Ham United – Tied 2-2
- November 25 – Rapid Wien vs. West Ham United – West Ham won 2-0
- December 9 – West Ham United vs. Dinamo Zagreb – Dinamo Zagreb won 1-0
Europa League Knockout Stage Schedule
By winning the group, West Ham has a bye into the Round of 16. The Round of 32 games will take place February 17 and February 24, with the draw for the Round of 16 set to take place February 25. Those games will be held in March.
Leicester City Europa League History
This season marks the second straight year Leicester City played in the Europa League, and the fourth time overall.
Last season, after claiming first place in their group, the Foxes made it to the first round of the knockout stage but were eliminated by Czech First League squad Slavia Prague. After a scoreless draw in the first matchup, Slavia Prague won 2-0 at Leicester’s King Power Stadium to advance.
Leicester City also took part during the 1997-98 and 2000-01 seasons when the competition was called the UEFA Cup. The club did not make it out of the first round of action in either season.
West Ham United Europa League History
West Ham are playing in the Europa League for the fifth time in their history, and for the first time since the 2016-17 campaign.
The Hammers played in the Europa League in back-to-back seasons in 2015-16 and 2016-17.
In 2015-16, West Ham entered the competition in the first qualifying round, scoring a 4-0 win over Andorra’s Lusitanos and then advancing via penalty-kick shootout over Maltese Premier League squad Birkirkara. However they fell two rounds short of group stage action with a 4-3 loss to Romania’s Astra Giurgiu.
The following season, West Ham advanced to the playoff stage, but again fell short of group stage action. Entering at the third qualifying round, West Ham scored a 4-2 win over Slovenia’s NK Domzale before being eliminated by Romania’s Astra Giurgiu for the second straight year (2-1).
In 1999-2000, West Ham advanced to the second round, and in 2006-07 the squad failed to win a game in the competition.
Watch the UEFA Europa League in the U.S.
Future Europa League Dates
With the group stages lasting until the early part of December, the draw for the start of the knockout round was December 13, with those games to be played February 17 and 24, 2022. The second round of the knockout stage will be drawn February 25, with games to be held March 10 and 17.
The last draw for the eight-team bracket will be March 18, with the quarterfinals taking place April 7 and 14 followed by the semifinals on April 28 and May 5.
The final will take place in Seville, Spain on May 18, and the winner automatically qualifies for next season’s Champions League group stage.
Tickets to Europa League Home Games
Groundhopper Guides is authorized to sell Europa League tickets and hospitality packages. Check out our the clubs where we have options, or just fill out the form below to inquire about pricing and availability for a specific game.