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West Ham defender Vladimir Coufal happy to be back; targets Lyon return

West Ham defender Vladimir Coufal is happy to be back in action.

Coufal made his return to action on Sunday afternoon, starting the 2-0 defeat at Brentford Community Stadium – his first appearance since the draw at Leicester City on 13 February.

He told the club's website: "It's been seven weeks after the surgery. It's been a long time but I have to say many thanks to all of our staff.

"That includes the physio and fitness coaches, mainly Rich [Collinge], Josh [Ewens] and Nick [Davies], and also a big thanks to my wife because she looked after me like a third child, because my first day after surgery, I could do almost nothing – I just lay on the sofa!

"It was unpleasant and I was worse than a small kid, so big thanks to all the staff who looked after me and now I feel really good and confident, but I had in my mind a better return with a win, but unfortunately that's football.

"The guys did an unbelievable job against Lyon [in the first leg], that's why we can still go through to the semi-finals of the Europa League.

"Now, it's a big game ahead of us on Thursday, so we need to do a very good recovery after today, and just look ahead."

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