Vladimír Coufal reflects on an ‘unbelievable’ moment

The game was fundamentally the same – a performance coated in Claret and Blue quality – but the difference in atmosphere to meet it was stark.

Vladimír Coufal played in front of West Ham United supporters for only the second time on Sunday afternoon in the 3-0 win over Southampton – and could not believe the 10,000 fans’ ‘unbelievable’ rendition of ‘I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles.’

The result capped a spectacular campaign for the Irons which has seen them finish sixth in the 2020/21 Premier League table, set the Club’s all-time Premier League points record, and seal qualification for next season’s UEFA Europa League group stages in the process.

But for Coufal – who joined the Irons in October 2020, and hence had only played one game in front of a small number of Claret and Blue-clad supporters back in December – one moment stood out in particular amid Sunday’s jubilations.

I wanted us to overcome a Club record, 62 points, so it’s done now and I’m really proud

Vladimír Coufal 

He recalled: “Until now I had never played in front of so many West Ham fans, and I really enjoyed it. 

“Our anthem at the beginning was unbelievable and I really look forward to being at a full stadium.

“I realise what we achieved now. It was my goal. I wanted us to overcome a Club record, 62 points, so it’s done now [we have finished with 65 points] and I’m really proud. 

“We are now the best team in West Ham [Premier League] history. I’m very, very proud.”

A modest, affable character whose conscientiousness carries a huge influence in the West Ham dressing room, Coufal was keen to acknowledge the input of the wider team behind the season’s successes.

“I wouldn’t say I was a big reason this season,” he noted.  

“I’m just one part of our squad to be honest, and I’m so grateful that we reached the Europa League for next season. 

“I’m very proud of every member of my squad and team – including the medical team, the media team, and so on – everyone at West Ham.”

Typically focused, Coufal and his Czech Republic teammate Tomáš Souček will now turn their attentions to the UEFA Euro 2020 Finals – a tournament scheduled to begin on Friday 11 June.

Placed in Group D of the competition, the duo can be expected to feature in group stage matches against Croatia, England – likely to feature Hammers teammate Declan Rice – and Scotland, home country of manager David Moyes.

“We have Tomáš in our squad so it’s clear we’ll reach the final!” Coufal laughed.

“I’m joking. We spoke with Stuart Pearce, and with the manager yesterday, and he told us we don’t have to lose against Scotland! 

“I hope it will be true that we do well, and we will do everything for success in the Euros. You never know what could happen.”

Season Ticket renewals open for 2021/22 Premier League season