Gregor revels in shootout heroics
Gregor Zabret has revealed his delight following his penalty shootout heroics in Swansea City Under-23s’ Premier League Cup quarter-final victory over Nottingham Forest.
The Slovenian goalkeeper denied Alex Mighten and Brennan Johnson from the spot as the Swans prevailed 3-0 on penalties at the Impact Arena in Alfreton.
He also kept out Johnson in normal time - palming the Forest midfielder’s 15th-minute kick away to safety - and carried a commanding presence between the sticks throughout the contest.
Zabret, who was part of the Swans side that lifted the trophy in 2017, is now just two victories away from doing so for a second time.
As one of the more senior players in the side, he is also hopeful of experiencing glory once more for the sake of his team-mates.
“I am very happy to have saved the penalties,” he said. “I was so pleased that I guessed correctly and was able to help the team.
“It was just one of those nights where everything went right for me.
“I like to organise my defence well and help them as much as I can. As an older player in the team, I’m happy I can pass on my experience.
“I’m proud of the way the boys performed. They deserve great credit and we’re looking forward to the semi-finals.
“It was a great feeling to lift the trophy a couple of years ago. I have some great memories from that season, so I’m hoping we can go all the way again this year and the other boys can experience that, too.”
Zabret’s penalty-saving exploits were the perfect way to mark his seventh appearance in this season’s Premier League Cup – and 14th in all competitions.
Following injury to Erwin Mulder and Steven Benda subsequently set to step-up to the first-team bench, the 23-year-old has the chance to potentially enjoy an extended run in the development side between now and the end of the season.
“It’s always good to get a good run of games in the team to build some momentum,” he added.
“If you’re not playing regularly, you have to keep working in hard in training so that you’re ready for when the opportunity comes and make the most of it.
“You never know what’s going to happen in football but, hopefully, I can build on the last few games and finish the season in a strong manner.”