s West Ham’s players crashed to the floor at full time, they knew this their hopes of a top four finished had just been dashed in a frantic final minutes.
A wasteful display from Michail Antonio and Nick Pope’s Burnley heroics had held the Hammers to a draw after Arsenal and Tottenham had opened the door to fifth but – just as with last weekend at Brentford – West Ham could not step through.
Pope made an astonishing late save from Issa Diop amid a late West Ham rally after Tomas Soucek had cancelled out Wout Weghorst’s first half goal.
With the chance to move fifth after their rivals had lost on Saturday and with David Moyes determined to continue fighting on both fronts, there were just three changes from Thursday’s historic night in Lyon.
Jarrod Bowen, who delivered the coup de grace in France on Thursday, kept his place and tested England goalkeeper Pope early on.
After a well worked corner routine saw Declan Rice tee Bowen up on the edge of the box, the winger’s first shot was blocked before Pope dived to tip the follow-up away for a corner.
Burnley certainly weren’t removing the shackles following Sean Dyche’s sacking and the Hammers were the ones dominating early on.
James Tarkowski, who Moyes has tried so hard to bring here in the past, had to clear off the line from Aaron Cresswell’s well struck volley.
Play was stopped for almost 10 minutes after a horrible injury to Burnley’s Ashley Westwood, whose leg buckled under a tackle from Nikola Vlasic, who was in tears before the winger was stretchered off and whisked away to hospital.
There was another brief delay as medics were called into the stand behind Lukasz Fabianski’s goal but play then resumed and Burnley made a quick start.Having hardly threatened they won a corner while West Ham were still getting up to speed.
Jay Rodriguez met Maxwel Cornet’s inswinging delivery and headed onto the bar, sending the ball spinning up and back into the six yard box, where Weghorst rose above Tomas Soucek to nod the Clarets ahead.
The visitors had the chance to double their lead in the first of nine minutes added time at the end of the first half. A sloppy ball from Ben Johnson handed possession to Burnley, who broke quickly through Cornet. Fabianski raced out to meet the winger but brought him down in the box, conceding a penalty.
Cornet stepped up to convert but made an absolute hash of it – firing wide after a stuttered run up.
West Ham stepped up after the break, Soucek could only nudge Manuel Lazini’s cross wide of the far post but the Hammers were dominating the ball. Antonio, who has not scored a Premier League goal since New Year’s Day, had two fine chances but sent the first well wide from Johnson’s cross before the second went straight into the hands of Nick Pope.
Declan Rice then glanced his own header wide from Cresswell’s free-kick.
West Ham were in control but Burnley still posed a threat of their own, Rodriguez turning Cornet’s cross just wide from the edge of the box.
Antonio may have been wasting every chance which fell his way but the forward was still fighting and did well to win a free-kick from Corent down the left flank.
West Ham have become so potent from set pieces under Moyes and showed it again here – Soucek bundling in Lanzini’s cross to bring them level. It was not one to remember and Soucek celebrated by racing back to half way and planting the ball firmly on the spot, not content with just a point.
The Hammers pushed forward once more but substitute Said Benrahma sent his effort well wide of the far post.
The hosts were not deterred but were denied a late winner by some outstanding goalkeeping from Pope. The England goalkeeper first tipped a powerful Antonio strike over the bar before somehow clawing Issa Diop’s header up and away off the line.
Pope then stood tall and took an Antonio strike from six yards straight in the midriff.
Antonio had done everything right until the final moment all afternoon and left the pitch, head in hands, knowing he should have left with more.
It may well have long been the case but a Europa League trophy win now seems West Ham’s only route to the Champions League.