Villa goalkeeper Jed Steer stares down Mason Holgate before penalty save
Steer started the season as Aston Villa's fourth choice goalkeeper
Jed Steer was the hero on Tuesday night as Aston Villa beat West Bromwich Albion 4-3 on penalties to reach the Championship play-off final at Wembley.
It's been a remarkable turnaround of fortunes for Steer who started the season on loan at League One side Charlton Athletic before an injury to Orjan Nyland meant that he was recalled by Dean Smith at the turn of the year.
Since then, the 26-year-old has been in superb form for the Villans and was a huge part of their 10-match winning streak towards the end of the regular season.
At times against Albion, however, it did appear as though the occasion might get the better of the relatively inexperienced Steer - particularly after he hit one goal kick straight into the path of Jacob Murphy, who would have scored had Villa centre back Tyrone Mings not scrambled back to clear off the line.
Despite this, he came up huge for his team in the shootout, saving from both Mason Holgate and Ahmed Hegazi, West Brom's first two takers.
He appeared to relish the mental battle, too. As Holgate walked up to take the very first penalty, Steer walked alongside the right-back and continuously stared at him, attempting to psyche the Everton loanee out.
Jed Steer psyching out Holgate... pic.twitter.com/huhtJj59Zv
— vízzy9 (@vizzy9) May 14, 2019
And it clearly worked.
🧳 10/8/18 - Sent out on loan.
📞 31/12/18 - Recalled to cover injuries.
🧤 16/2/19 - Takes his chance to become No 1 choice keeper.
🙌 14/05/19 - Saves two penalties to send @AVFCOfficial to the Play-Off final.
🦁 What a story for @JedSteer. #SkyBetPlayOffs #StepUp #AVFC #EFL pic.twitter.com/v3DyLBU4GU
— Sky Bet (@SkyBet) May 14, 2019
Conor Hourihane, Mile Jedinak, Jack Grealish and Tammy Abraham all scored their spot-kicks for Villa with the only miss coming from Albert Adomah, taking fourth, who blazed his penalty over the crossbar. Tosin Adarabioyo, Kieran Gibbs and James Morrison converted for Albion.
After the game, Aston Villa manager Dean Smith said of Steer: “It’s amazing what can happen as Jed was at Charlton on loan earlier this year and now he’s a hero for us."