Charlie Burns feels he has proved to manager Karl Robinson that he is a capable understudy for MK Dons.
The 19-year-old keeper was handed his first start for the club on Tuesday night when he kept a clean sheet at Hillsborough in the 0-0 draw with Sheffield Wednesday.
While the home side hit the frame of the goal four times during the game, Burns was more than a match for anything Wednesday had to throw at him as they sought a decisive goal.
And given his performance on the big stage, Burns feels he has proven himself to manager Robinson.
“I understand my role in the club and my position in the squad. I know what I need to work on and improve, but I’m pleased the gaffer saw me, knows I’m capable.
“I’ve got a taste for it now, and I’m really looking forward to the future. Nothing compares to playing in front of a crowd like this, but until you actually do it, you’re never really sure.
“You’re confident in your abilities, but until you’re out there with the fans and the atmosphere you never know. I’m glad to have done it and got the first one out the way.”
Burns’ inclusion in the side was confirmed late on Tuesday afternoon when Cody Cropper’s unsuccessful appeal against his red card at Preston was confirmed.
And getting the late call helped, the keeper admitted.
He said: “Everything happened pretty quickly and before I knew it, I was on the team sheet. It helped a lot because I didn’t have time to think about it or for nerves to set in.
“The boys were great to me, and told me they’d make sure I got a few easy touches to ease me into the game.
“I spoke to both Cody (Cropper) and Dave (Martin) before the game, and it really settled the nerves. And Paul Heald was brilliant too.”
On the pitch, Dons had their backs to the wall for the majority of the second half, though but for a few half chances and the frame of the goal, Burns’ saves were fairy straight forward, something he was thankful for.
“We really limited the number of chances they had,” he added. “Personally, I’m thankful to the post quite a lot. I owe a lot to the posts!
“ We dealt well with what they were able to create though.”