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West Ham with plenty to do in Europa League - Zarate

West Ham United still have a lot of work to do if they want to qualify for the Europa League this season.

The Hammers were held to a 2-2 draw by Romanian club Astra Giurgiu at Upton Park on Thursday night despite leading by two goals early in the second half when Mauro Zarate struck.

However, James Collins was sent off just before the hour-mark which prompted Astra to fight back with two late goals, which gives them a slight advantage heading into the third round qualifying return leg next week.

Ahead of that crucial clash, Argentine forward Zarate has highlighted the importance of his side's ability to bounce back in order to progress to the play-off round of Europe's second tier club competition.

"It was bad in the dressing room after the game because we scored two goals and in the second half we had to play a little bit more, but that is football," he told the club's official website.

"It was great for me to score a goal but I am also very sad as this is not a good result for us.

"We will have another tough game in Romania next week. They will attack and we have to win. It will be a good match for everyone."

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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