Slaven Bilic says he is proud to see Aaron Cresswell get his maiden call-up to the England squad and feels he has established himself as one of the best left-backs in the Premier League.
Cresswell won his first cap for England as a late substitute during the 2-2 draw with former World and three-times European Champions Spain at Wembley on Tuesday night.
The West Ham manager has nothing but praise for the way the talented full-back has matured as a player following his big move into the Premier League when he joined the Hammers from Ipswich back in 2014 and feel he has the quality to compete on the international stage.
Bilic said: “I am very proud of Aaron and he deserves it after the way he performed last season. It was not just people at West Ham saying it, but a lot of people outside the Club.
“He had a great season and we hoped that he would go to the Euro Finals during the summer but he didn't make the squad.
“He has now come back from injury which was the first major injury of his career and he came back really good. He is playing very well and we are delighted that he got a call-up to the England squad.
“For me he is one of the best left backs in the Premier League. The way he trains is fantastic and he is a great professional. He always gives his best and has improved a lot on his defending.
“With the ball he was always a top player with his crosses, movement and pace. He has a great left foot and is a top defender.
“He came back against Crystal Palace and you always have concerns how players are going to do after a long injury, but he looked like he had never been away. He was unfortunate to get sent-off but he has come back against Chelsea, Everton and Stoke and looks really good.”
For me he is one of the best left backs in the Premier League. The way he trains is fantastic and he is a great professional.
Bilic is well aware of the strong competition for places at left-back in the England squad, but has no doubts that Cresswell will continue to show his best form in a West Ham shirt over the coming weeks and months.
Bilic added: “He will want to stay in the squad now and it is now up to him. The competition there is very strong as Danny Rose is in top form and Ryan Bertrand is playing very well.
“Luke Shaw is back after a long injury and plays for a big club which always helps. But Cressy has now got a chance playing for West Ham and I am sure he will keep his place.
“The boost it gives the players when they get a call-up is so great that every manager including myself wants more of them to join up with their national teams.”
Cresswell has certainly benefitted from from a change in system in recent games which has seen Bilic employ a new wing-back formation and loves to show off his attacking qualities.
“He loves getting forward and this is a system which suits him. But he played a number of games in a back four and this system can only help him get better. He is a top player and is very versatile. He can play well in both systems.