Aaron Cresswell enjoyed the international break, making his first ever start for England in the 1-0 FIFA World Cup qualifying Group E victory over Lithuania in Vilnius on Sunday. The full back put in an assured performance, operating as a left wing-back as England adopted the 3-4-3 system which is currently in vogue.
Speaking to the West Ham United website, Cresswell remarked about the enjoyable experience of the England set-up:
“A few of the West Ham lads have messaged me saying ‘Well done’ and of course family and friends as well. It is my third cap but to start for your country is what you dream of when you are a little boy. Thankfully I have done that and felt I did OK.
“We didn’t know the team until late. We found out a couple of hours before the game. The family didn’t come over, they didn’t know if I was playing or not. I was delighted to see myself in the starting eleven and I want to kick on now.”
As we would come to expect from Cresswell, he was solid defensively, while also peppering dangerous crosses into the opposition penalty area. The West Ham man also saw a header well-saved by Ernestas Setkus:
“I think Hendo (Jordan Henderson) crossed it. I didn’t actually see it until late, but managed to get the header. The keeper’s made a good save and I am disappointed it didn’t go in. These things happen. Hopefully I will have another chance to get one in future.”
Cresswell has four career goals for West Ham, but hasn’t found the net since the 2015/16 season; his highest single-season goal tally was 4 for League One Tranmere Rovers in 2010/11.
He turned his attention to Saturday’s Premier League trip to Burnley:
“I will take this positive experience back to the Club and into Burnley on Saturday. It has been tough at the start but we have had some good results of late.
“Performances have been OK but all the lads will get back together in training this week after the international break. Hopefully we will kick on again and continue pushing higher up the league.”
Naturally, Cresswell wants to impress during the next run of West Ham games in order to feature in Gareth Southgate’s squad for two upcoming Wembley friendlies:
“Germany and Brazil are going to be much tougher opposition and certainly tougher games but that's something the lads relish and look forward to.
“You want to play [against] the best players in the world and in the next two games that's what we want to do. Hopefully we can learn from the experience and take it into the World Cup.”