Guzan: Starting spot isn't a Given
Brad Guzan is determined to carry on 'seizing the moment' as he strives to nail down his hard-earned first team place at Aston Villa.
Guzan, 28, further justified his inclusion at the expense of the veteran Shay Given by producing a man-of-the-match performance in Saturday's 1-1 Premier League draw at home to Norwich.
Villa, under former Canaries boss Paul Lambert, have made their worst start to a season for 43 years but the form of a keeper they actually let go at the end of last season remains a cause for optimism.
"You want to be playing and it's about working hard each day on the training ground and hopefully hearing your name called out for a match day," Guzan said. "You just continue to work hard and try to improve.
"For me, this is the best league in the world, with the best players, and I want to play week in, week out. I am happy I came back to the club (after the change of manager) and happy the club had me back.
"Shay and I have a good relationship off the pitch and I have the utmost respect for him. We push each other day after day. Now it's a matter of me seizing the moment and trying to get Villa up the table. If I do that, I've done my job."
Guzan's excellence alone preserved a weekend point for Villa, with Norwich considerably the better side.
Lambert's men now face a visit to their former manager Martin O'Neill at Sunderland, followed by a difficult three weeks with games against Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal on consecutive weekends.
It is a daunting sequence but Guzan sees encouraging signs and was impressed with the resilience of the players around him on a day when Villa remained just outside the bottom three.
"The sending-off [of Joe Bennett] changed things but the effort the lads put in in front of me was first class," he added. "It was a bit of a makeshift back four after some injuries but credit to those players for blocking so many shots and crosses."