By Phil Jennings
JED Steer admits he is ‘desperate’ to keep his place as Villa’s No1 keeper.
Steer has been a revelation since he took over from £6million Croatia international Lovre Kalinic.
And he confirmed boss Dean Smith’s decision to make him his first choice by saving a penalty from Sheffield Wednesday striker Steven Fletcher in the 3-1 win at Hillsborough.
Steer has not lost a game this season when he has started for Villa.
He recently signed a new one-year contract and the 26-year-old does not want a return to warming the bench in what is his longest run in the team.
Steer told reporters: “Since I’ve had the shirt I’ve wanted to keep it.
“I am desperate to take this opportunity the manager has given me.
“It’s been brilliant.
“There’ve been fine details we’ve touched on and I think I speak for all the goalkeepers at the club when I say we’ve all improved.
“Every day we go onto the training pitch wanting to improve and get to the next level to help the team. It’s been really good.”
Steer says he did his homework ahead of the Wednesday game which saw him make a crucial penalty save.
The Villa keeper added: “We’d done our homework heading into the game. We all have a meeting and look at potential penalty takers, where they tend to like going.
“We decided Fletcher likes going that way. Thankfully for us he did and I managed to get a hand on it.
“It depends whether you have a good memory or not! You sit and watch the video and go: ‘Yep, he’ll put it that way’ and then you get out on the pitch and you’ve forgotten!
“I’d remembered what was said prior to the game if Fletcher was going to take it.
“I looked over to Neil Cutler just to make sure and he pointed a little finger which way he thought it might go! Thankfully for us we guessed right. But it was a group decision.”