Both sides last won a major UEFA competition in the 1960s (Cup Winners Cup). Only one of them will end their long wait for a European title when they meet in the UEFA Europa Conference League (UECL) final in Prague.
Also, both sides finished outside of European qualification positions in their domestic leagues, so winning here is their only chance of returning to Europe next season.
The Italian side have already made history by becoming the first team to reach the final of all four major UEFA competitions. They will now attempt to improve their strike rate in UEFA Finals after lifting a European trophy just once in four prior attempts (W1, L3), an emphatic victory over Rangers in 1961
The Violets have put their Coppa Italia disappointment against Inter Milan last month behind them. They come into this showpiece event with two successive Serie A wins to wrap up their domestic season.
They had to battle past Basel to get this far, winning their semi-final courtesy of a late extra-time winner after losing the first leg at home.
West Ham United’s European stage has been the highlight of their season. This is after ending the 2022/2023 PL campaign in 14th position, winning just two of their final seven league fixtures (L5). They’ve made easier work of their progress to the final than their opponents (W13, D1) but have historically struggled against Italian opponents, so they will have to break through solid ground to lift a second-ever European title.
Older Hammers fans will remember a brace of 1-0 H2H defeats in the 1975 Anglo-Italian Cup, the only occasion these two sides have ever met. It has been a similar story since as they lost twice to Palermo in the 2006/2007 UEFA Cup. This was their only other experience against an Italian outfit.