SOUTHEND United goalkeeper Daniel Bentley has played down his role in his side's Johnstone's Paint Trophy triumph at Oxford United.

The 19-year-old replaced Paul Smith between the sticks for the penalty shoot in the area semi final clash at the Kassam Stadium on Tuesday night.

And, despite saving a spot kick from Alfie Potter to help Blues go through, Bentley was keen to divert any praise coming his way.

“I’m no hero,” said Bentley.

“Paul did really well for the 90 minutes and a little bit of stoppage time too.

“But I was delighted to come on and play a part, especially as it helped us get into the next round of the competition.”

Bentley was given the nod after saving two penalties against Bury in an FA Cup second round replay shoot out.

However, he dismissed suggestions claiming that keeping out spot-kicks was his speciality.

“I wouldn’t say I’m a penalty specialist to be honest,” said Bentley.

“I have just spent time studying the likes of Joe Hart at Manchester City and it seems to have paid off.

“But the last couple of games I've played have made me realise that I can save penalties and although it’s a bit of pot-luck I am confident when someone is stepping up to take a penalty.

“I dived the wrong way for the first three you have to remember.

“Yet luckily I went the right way with the fourth one and made the save.”

Bentley hopes that the crucial stop will have again reminded boss Sturrock of his talents.

And he is desperate to soon be restored to the starting line-up.

“I’ve said before I am not here to be sitting on the bench but Paul is an experienced goalkeeper and he has been doing well. “I will just keep working hard and doing the right things and then you never know.

"That’s all I can do but I’m just delighted to have played a part tonight in helping the team into the next round of the competition.”