Cresswell: Only the players can turn our form around

Aaron Cresswell battles for possession with Tottenham's Toby Alderweireld


Aaron Cresswell is not short of reasons to be highly motivated when West Ham United take on Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley in the Carabao Cup.

Not only is the defender desperate to turn around the Hammers’ recent run of indifferent form, but he has one eye on lifting the first major trophy of his professional career, and a win would take Cresswell and his teammates through to the quarter-finals.

With the added incentive of putting on a positive performance in front of a passionate 50,000-plus crowd and a television audience of millions at the historic Home of Football, and avenging last month’s Premier League defeat by Spurs, the No3 is both motivated and excited by the prospect of Wednesday’s mouth-watering London derby.

“It’s a massive game against Spurs, as it always is, and it’s even more so as it’s at Wembley, which is one of the most iconic and best stadiums in Europe,” he said. “To play there in a derby against Spurs in the cup is one we’re all excited to and looking forward to.

“Getting beat against Spurs at home and how the run has been going for us recently, which is not so good, give us extra motivation for Wednesday night. It is only down to us to turn that around and there is no better place to do it or team to do it against.

I’ve played at Wembley for England and been involved in squads a couple of times and it’s one of the best stadiums to play in. I am sure it will be a good atmosphere and I hope we can enjoy it and get a good result.”

Every game is important. I’m not going to say Wednesday or Saturday are more important because we want to progress in the cup and move up the table

Aaron Cresswell

Cresswell and the Hammers reached the quarter-finals of the same competition last season, beating Accrington Stanley and Chelsea before losing out at Manchester United.

The left-back is aware that West Ham need to overcome in-form opposition if they are to emulate that achievement, but he says Slaven Bilic’s side need to rise to the occasion if they are to continue their quest for the Club’s first major silverware in 38 years.

“Of course, Spurs have got some fantastic players and you want to play against the best players in the world, testing yourself in the best stadiums in the biggest games you can. Certainly, Wembley against Spurs is a massive game.

“As players, you want to win something or be involved in finals. I’ve never won a competition like this, and I don’t think many of the boys in the dressing room have either, so hopefully we can beat Spurs and progress further into the cup. This is a great chance to do that.”


Aaron Cresswell challenges Tottenham Hotspur's Christian Eriksen


Looking further ahead, West Ham face a vital Premier League fixture at bottom club Crystal Palace on Saturday – a game Cresswell says the Hammers must raise their game for if they want to avoid a potential relegation battle.

“It is only the starting XI or the 18 in the squad on a matchday who can change it, and all we can do is work hard on the training pitch and give our best to turn around the situation around that we’re in.

“I know there are only eight or nine games gone, but we certainly don’t want to be sitting around towards the back end of the table. For us, we’ve got to look forward to these games and hopefully turn it around.

“Every game is important. I’m not going to say Wednesday or Saturday are more important because we want to progress in the cup and move up the table and end this bad form that we’re in at the minute.”