Leo Chambers has spoken of his delight after making his West Ham United debut in the Capital One Cup victory over Cheltenham Town.
The defender played the full 90 minutes as goals from Ricardo Vaz Te and fellow debutant Ravel Morrison helped the Hammers into the third-round.
The 18-year-old has been a mainstay in the clubs Development Squad so far this season, playing every minute of their three matches. But the defender admits making his debut for the first team was something special.
He said: "It was a very big moment for me at the start of my career, it was my first start and once I got into the game I felt very confident."
Chambers fitted in seamlessly at right-back as Sam Allardyce's team maintained their unbeaten start to the season, despite his usual position being at the centre of defence.
When quizzed on whether he had experienced any nerves before the kick-off the defender gave an answer as cool as his performance.
"Everyone was asking me if I was nervous, but my response was 'no', it was more excitement than nerves.
"I thought I would get nervous as I stepped onto the pitch, but again it was just pure excitement. I didn't really show nerves out there, I was just confident and got myself into the game."
Chambers looked assured on the right-hand side, linking up well with Joe Cole and then Stewart Downing as a new look Hammers side created a host of chances.
It is not the first time that the youngster has been named in a first team squad, having previously been on the substitutes' bench on three occasions, but he was delighted to finally get a starting berth.
"It's very pleasing. I was on the bench three times last season but unfortunately I was held back by injury.
"I'm coming back now, I've made my first start and I'm feeling good. It was good of the manager to start me in a game and that's something I've got to repay him with good performances and I think I've done that tonight."
Allardyce included fellow Development Squad regulars Sebastian Lletget, Pelly Ruddock and Elliot Lee in the squad to face Cheltenham and despite none of them featuring from the bench, Chambers believes they can push for a place in the first team.
"Seb, Elliot and Pelly deserved it; they've had a good start to the season," he added.
"They played a few games for the first team during pre-season and reports came back saying they did well so I think they fully deserved it.
"Unfortunately they didn't get on the pitch tonight but I'm sure there will be other opportunities for them."
The Development Squad have won two of their three games this season and Chambers feels it has acted as the perfect springboard for himself and the other players to gain first team recognition.
"It's been good not only for me but the rest of the lads as well.
"The Under-21s are doing well, not only me but the whole team and I'm hoping a few of the other lads can join me and play for the first team."
It's been quite a journey through the ranks for Chambers who started out trying to score goals rather than stop them.
After making his first start the defender won't be fooled into thinking he has made it just yet.
"It's been a long road. I trained with the Under-12s playing centre-forward, tonight I played right-back and I usually play centre-back for the Under-21s, so it's been a very long road.
"Bit by bit, you've got to keep going, work hard, I've still got a long way to go and I plan to do so."