Town keeper Przybek on his penalty shootout heroics and ‘dark’ times at West Brom
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Ipswich Town goalkeeper Adam Przybek’s feet remain on the floor following his EFL Trophy heroics at Peterborough last night.
The 19-year-old produced two smart stops during a 1-1 draw and then saved two penalties in the shootout as a young Blues side put themselves in tonight's regionalised last 16 draw and just three wins away from a Wembley final.
Signed on a free transfer back in the summer following his release by West Brom, the English-born custodian - who plays for Wales at youth team level and is eligible to represent Poland - finds himself behind Tomas Holy and Will Norris in the pecking order and battling homegrown Harry Wright for Under-23s action.
Blues boss Paul Lambert is concerned that Wolves may recall Norris in January though and, with Wright injured, decided to take a look at Przybek at London Road.
"I was on loan last year in the EvoStick and saved two, so I wondered if I could be the hero again and thankfully I was," said the youngster, who has had spells at Worcester City, Rushall Olympic and Gloucester City.
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On his increasingly slow walks to the goal during the shootout, the teenager laughed: "It's got to be done! The momentum just needed to be killed a bit. There's no pressure as a keeper, you just do what you can to put them off and thankfully it worked out.
"I spoke to Jimmy (Walker, goalkeeper coach) and Gilly (first team coach Matt Gill) before the shootout and looked at the iPad before every pen. Jimmy gave little hand signals about which side they would potentially go so that played a massive part.
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"I'm glad we're into the next round because hopefully it gives me another opportunity to be in contention. At the moment I've got two great keepers ahead of me so I've just got to keep working and see where it takes me. I know I haven't done anything and I've got to keep working hard."
Przybek's post-match interview was interrupted by charismatic keeper coach Jimmy Walker who joked that the youngster milked his moment by going into the crowd to celebrate. The teenager explains: "People don't know the ins and outs, but there were a few dark moments for me at West Brom last season, so to share that moment at the end with my family was real nice."
Asked to elaborate, he said: "Things that were off the pitch. That doesn't need to be mentioned now, that chapter's gone. I came here in the summer and I can move on and achieve what I want to achieve.
"Then plan was for me to come in and start off with the Under-23s. I've been lucky enough to be involved with the first team from quite early on (training and travelling to games) and that has pushed me every day. I've just tried to be a sponge and learn as much as I can from senior players like (Cole) Skuse and Chambo (Luke Chambers). Being in and around it is massive for me."
On his decision to play Przybek, boss Lambert said: "People have to understand that when you have loan players (like Norris) there is always a chance they can go back (in January). You have to have one eye on 'what if?' scenarios. That's the position we're in as a football club. It's not a great position for us to be in because Will Norris has been great, so has Tomas Holy.
"Adam has proved to me in that game that, yeah, with a wee bit of time, let's see what he's got."