Diafra Sakho and Stewart Downing have taken all the plaudits this season, with their goalscoring and creative skills key to registering a surprise victory over Liverpool and setting the Hammers up for a positive season.
Due to the duo’s successes, one man to have gone under the radar is 24-year-old left-back Aaron Cresswell, who has started every game for Sam Allardyce’s men this campaign, playing an important part in a number of impressive defensive performances - capped with a first clean sheet of the season against QPR.
The victory over QPR was the Hammers most fully-rounded performance of the season, and the former Ipswich Town man told the official West Ham website that it came at the perfect time, with the three points heading into the international break a perfect platform to build from.
He said: "It's always nice to get a win, and a clean sheet as well. That was our first one of the season, so it was important to go into the international break with the three points to push us further up the table.”
Whilst registering the first shut-out of the season, Cresswell believes that it has been the quick goalscoring exploits of the Hammers that have given them the edge this season. Having taken the lead inside two minutes in the 3-1 victory over Liverpool, before doubling their tally five minutes later, a Nedum Onuoha own goal gave the Londoner’s the advantage against QPR in the first five minutes, and Cresswell believes that taking control of the game early has been of vital importance to the Hammers successes early in the campaign.
“On Sunday we went 1-0 up and then controlled the game in the first half,” he continued.
“Of course it helped to score the early goal. It was the same when we played Liverpool - we got the two early goals that day and it was the same kind of situation against QPR.
“I thought the whole eleven were excellent on Sunday. We controlled the game very well in the first half and, although they had a spell in the first ten minutes after half time when they changed formation, overall we deserved to win the game."