Are West Ham still in the Europa League? Why Premier League team is not in Round of 32 - UEFA rules explained

West Ham aren’t competing in this week’s Europa League Round of 32.

Europa League football returns to action this week, however West Ham will not be part of it.

West Ham secured top spot in Group H earlier in the season, despite their 1-0 defeat to Dinamo Zagreb in December.

A number of teams that were previously knocked out of the Champions League - including Barcelona, RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund - will join the Europa League’s Round of 32, however the Hammers will avoid facing them in this week’s round of fixtures.

Why aren’t West Ham in the Round of 32?

This year’s competition will see a slight change in format.

All teams that progress from the group stage usually enter at the Round of 32, however this year those who topped their groups effectively earn a bye to the second knockout round.

Instead, the teams who came second in their groups will face those sides that came third in the Champions League in order to enter the last 16.

This means that West Ham, Lyon, Monaco, Spartak Moscow, Eintracht Frankfurt, Galatasaray, Red Star Belgrade and Bayer Leverkusen all go straight through to the Round of 16.

When will West Ham feature in the Europa League?

The Round of 16 draw is due to take place at 12pm on 25 February.

Three months after their last Europa League clash, West Ham will return to action for the first leg of the Round of 16 tie on March 10, with the second leg taking place the following week.

Despite managing to avoid some of the European giants in the Round of 32, they could still face a tough challenge if they are to progress to the Round of 16.

Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig are taking on Napoli, Rangers and Real Sociedad respectively.

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