A jubilant Dean Smith spoke to the media after guiding the club he supports into the Carabao Cup final.
The Aston Villa boss discussed his emotions, making the final, the Villa Park crowd and the subs who changed the game.
Here’s what he had to say…
On his emotions…
I’ve composed myself now, but I certainly let myself go when we scored that goal with two minutes to go.
I’m very proud of the players and I though we made it an entertaining game. We know how good Leicester are and have been this season.
Very proud of the effort and the performance that the players put in today. It was a really good game to watch.
On making the final…
It means an awful lot. We’ve got a proud history in this competition as I’ve said many times.
If we could go and lift this trophy for a sixth time, I’d be a very proud man.
We know it’s going to be tough against Manchester City or Manchester United, but the hard part is getting to a domestic cup final and we’ve managed to do that against a very good Leicester team.
On Samatta debut…
I thought he did well. I knew he would tire at around 60 minutes.He stretches defenders, he gave Söyüncü and Evans a tough time and he linked play up well at times.
He’ll get better once he adjusts to the pace of the game. He probably needs to sort his feet out a little bit better for the chance he had in the first half but he almost got on the end of a super ball from Jack in the second half.
He’ll be better for 60 minutes tonight. He showed us the potential he’s got.
On Nyland performance…
Pepe’s come in and done really well for us. He’s not trained since the Watford game due to a tight calf.
Orjan was always in to play this game and he showed me what he’s about.
He’s certainly given me a conundrum for Wembley but that’s what I want.
On Villa Park atmosphere…
It’s a very special place, a very special ground. I knew the atmosphere would be at fever pitch.
The players lived up to it and we were aggressive in how we played and how we pressed.
Some good defending and some good goalkeeping kept them at bay.
I don’t know if they were inspired or whether I just knew Trez would give us that bit more energy.
Keinan did the same and Elmo’s put in a superb ball at the end. It’s great when they can come on and make the impact like they did tonight.