Since David Moyes has returned to West Ham, the Hammers have become the kings of set-pieces.
With dead-ball specialists Aaron Cresswell, Jarrod Bowen and Pablo Fornals whipping the deliveries in, the Hammers have become a constant threat every time they win a corner or free-kick in the opposition’s half.
This set-piece threat could be the key to getting West Ham back to winning ways according to Cresswell.
“It’s been a big part of our success over the last 18 months, set pieces and the coaching staff have taken a real big shine to it and it’s a big part of our game,” Creswell told talkSPORT. “We work on it every Friday defending and attacking and you saw again against Brighton we got another set-piece goal and we could have had more with the offside goal for Mich [Antonio]. We work on it a lot and as I say it’s been a big part of our success.
“When you’ve got the lads we’ve got in Craig Dawson, Kurt Zouma, Issa Diop, Tomas Soucek, Michail Antonio, Declan Rice they are all above 6’4 and willing to attack the ball. And certainly, when you’ve got good delivery it is a great combination. And sometimes it’s impossible to defend and, as I say, as you’ve seen it has been a big part of our success.”
One of those attacking Cresswell’s set-pieces is new Hammer Zouma, who will come up against his former side on Saturday, and Cresswell was effusive in his praise of the French international.
“He’s a very positive guy to have around the dressing room. The most important thing is on the field and he’s been a great addition to the squad. He’s been fantastic,” Cresswell added.
“As a centre-half he is everything you want, he’s quick, he is strong and certainly from my point of view where there is a set-piece he is another big one to come in and attack the ball. He has been brilliant Kurt.”
West Ham go into the fixture against the league leaders in fourth but Cresswell was keen to cool talk of a top-four finish, stressing his team will take it one game at a time.
“We don’t sit down and have any targets of where we want to finish or anything like that,” he said.
“Just because we lost a game against Man City and a draw against Brighton, that doesn’t dampen our aim of what we want to do. We know that throughout the season we were going to have a little dip in form. It’s up to us to rectify that and put that right and, as I say, certainly against Chelsea, what a way to do it and that’s what we’re aiming for.
“We want to take maximum points from the games we play, whether that’s [against] the best team in the league or the worst team in the league, that’s our aim.”