At the sound of the full-time whistle at The Hawthorns on Wednesday evening, the West Ham United players were celebrating like they knew they were on the verge of something special.
Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal embraced after the defender had lifted Pablo Fornals joyously in the air. Declan Rice and Michail Antonio clasped hands as they went over to greet former Hammer Grady Diangana.
Jesse Lingard was seen play fighting with Kevin Nolan before heading down the tunnel to celebrate with his teammates in private.
There were smiles all around and why not after a come from behind win to leave the Hammers just one point from securing a Europa League spot next season, something barely believable just 12 months ago.
Once the players went off the field, Lingard let on that the jovial atmosphere continued.
“It wasn’t pretty, I’ll tell you that. The boys are in the dressing room celebrating a big win,” he told West Ham TV.
The game almost got off the perfect start for the Hammers only for Rice to hit the woodwork with his penalty and then Soucek to deflect a Matheus Pereira corner beyond stand-in keeper Darren Randolph.
Either incident could have seen West Ham’s heads drop but the team held off a prolonged spell of West Brom pressure before Soucek tapped in Said Benrahma’s perfect cross to make it 1-1 on the stroke of half-time.
Lingard said that despite the early setbacks the Hammers players kept their composure and showed great courage in coming from behind to seal all three points.
“We stuck together through the hard times. We knew it was going to be difficult against West Brom,” he said.
“It is always difficult coming here, especially the first time with fans back, which is amazing. They were going to get behind them and show support for them to win the game.”
Lingard added: “The lads showed courage, fight and great character to come back.”
The England international put the Hammers win down to remaining calm after conceding and letting their quality shine in the closing stages.
“When you come here and go one down, it is time to wake up a bit and kick on, then, the class comes through.”
As David Moyes pointed out after the game West Ham are close to their Europa League aim but the job is not yet done, with one point needed to clinch a top-six finish.
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Not that Lingard is going to settle for a draw: “We don’t play for a draw or a loss, we always play for a win, no matter what,” he said.
It is not just the thought of a Europa League campaign spurring West Ham on this weekend according to Lingard but the return of 10,000 Hammers supporters to the London Stadium as well.
“It’s another big game at the weekend,” he said, “we’ve got the fans there [as well], which will be brilliant to put on a show for them.”