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Fourth try for elusive trophy

Filed: Friday, 6th July 2018
By: Staff Writer

West Ham United will face Bundesliga outfit FSV Mainz in this year's annual Betway Cup encounter, as they bid to win the trophy for the first time.

The Hammers - who are currently in Switzerland for pre-season training - will return to mainland Europe for the one-off match, which is scheduled to take place at the Kufstein Arnea, Tyrol, on Tuesday 31 July.

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West Ham were last in Austria just over a year ago, when the Hammers played out a goalless draw with Sturm Graz on the first leg of 2017's pre-season tour. Thereafter they took in fixtures against Fulham, Werder Bremen (twice) and Altona 93.

Meanwhile this year's Betway Cup will be the fourth occasion on which the trophy has been played for.

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Werder Bremen were West Ham's first opponents in August 2015, beating United 2-1 courtesy of a brace from Anthony Ujah - who, coincidentally, now lines up for West Ham's forthcoming opponents, Mainz.

The following year, the Cup was won by Juventus in the opening fixture at the Olympic Stadium, when Paulo Dybala, Mario Mandzukic and a certain Simone Zaza scored for the visitors, cancelling out Andy Carroll's brace.

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And last summer a two-legged affair against Werder Bremen saw the Hammers go down 3-2 on aggregate, losing the opening fixture 1-0 and drawing the follow-up, 24 hours later, 2-2 (goals from Luca Caldirola and Yuning Zhang for Bremen, Marko Arnautovic and Toni Martinez for West Ham).

This year's contest, for which tickets will be available soon, takes place at 5.30pm (BST).

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