West Ham’s Aaron Cresswell has urged his teammates to stay positive following their 2-0 defeat to Bayer Leverkusen.

Going on a European away day to one of the best teams in the world at the moment was always going to be an incredibly difficult task. For much of the game against Bayer Leverkusen though, West Ham managed to deal with the challenge. Unfortunately, as they have done so many time before, the Germans struck a late double to head into the second leg with a two goal advantage.

Veteran defender Aaron Cresswell knew that his side was always going to be in for a tough night, but he was eager to remind everyone that we are only at the half way point in the tie. “We knew it was going to be tough going to Leverkusen,” he told the official site. They’re a really good passing side, possession-based and don’t force any balls, so it was tough at times holding on, but we hung in there for 83 minutes so it was really frustrating to concede a first goal and then a second as well.”

“Look, it’s only half-time and we have to stay positive. It’s another big European night at London Stadium and we need everyone together to try and turn the tie around. We’ve been in these type of ties, one-nil down, like Sevilla a couple of years ago, and we brought them back to our place and beat them, so we need another big night.”

“They’re a really good side and unbeaten in 42 games, so we’ve got to go back to the training ground, dust ourselves off and play on Sunday and then go again on Thursday.”

Despite him trying to force a move away last Summer, Cresswell has done a brilliant job as a backup for Emerson this season. However, he has at times played alongside the Italian in a back 5. Whatever role he’s playing though, he says he is going to do his absolute best in.

“I’ve been here a long time and whether I’m on the pitch, on the bench or in the stands, I’ll give everything I’ve got for the team and for the Club. Every footballer wants to play as many games as they can and when called upon I’ll give everything I’ve got.”

So far this season, West Ham have done a good job at balancing both European and domestic football, but it is vital they continue to do it as we head into the final part of the campaign. They’ve slipped out of the European places and they’ve got to come back from 2-0 against a side that has not lost any of their last 42 games – it’s an uphill battle but one Cresswell has urged his teammates to go into with the right mindset.

“We have to stay positive,” he stated. “We’ve got some massive games in the Premier League to come and we want to finish as high up the table as we can and get back into those European spots.

“It’s certainly up for grabs as there are only six games left for us now, and on Thursday night we want to get through into the next round.”