KI SUNG-YEUNG has branded his dramatic first goal in English football as a “once in a lifetime experience”.
The on-loan Swansea midfielder sent Sunderland through to their first League Cup semi-final since 1999 last night after grabbing a last-gasp extra-time winner against Chelsea.
Substitute Ki, who had almost netted moments earlier with a header, has been pushed into a more advanced role over the last two games to accommodate the return of Lee Cattermole into the starting XI.
And the South Korean responded with his first domestic goal since netting for Celtic in February, 2012, to cap a stunning comeback from the Premier League’s basement boys.
Ki told the Echo: “I can’t express the feeling. It’s my first goal in England, a quarter-final against Chelsea and scoring in the last minute. That’s maybe a once in a lifetime experience.
“It was great to celebrate and to get through to the semi-final.
“I had a chance a few minutes before with the header, but I thought I would get another chance.
“I was pushed forward. In the last game at West Ham, I had a lot of chances, but couldn’t score, so I was desperate to get one.
“I think we should score more goals from midfield.
“We can’t always rely on strikers. If I’m pushed forward, I’ll hopefully get a lot more chances.
“That was my second game, so I’m expecting to score more.”
Chelsea looked to be coasting to victory before substitute Fabio Borini equalised with two minutes of normal time remaining.
That goal rejuvenated Gus Poyet’s side, who were in the ascendancy throughout extra-time before grabbing the winner with just 90 seconds remaining.
And Ki believes Sunderland, who will discover their semi-final opponents tonight, can take the confidence from a morale-boosting victory into their fight to remain in the Premier League.
The 24-year-old said: “I think the boys were desperate to win. They had a lot of energy and we were fitter than Chelsea. We controlled the game in extra time.
“Chelsea are one of the best teams in England. Even though this is the League Cup, we don’t care, because we’ll get a lot of confidence from that.
“I think definitely it can help our league form. The atmosphere is buzzing among the boys and we all believe.
“If we can beat Chelsea, we can beat other terms.
“But we have to get our focus back for Saturday.”
Despite playing 30 minutes of extra-time, Ki believes the boost stemming from victory can help Sunderland overcome fatigue against the Canaries.
“If we had lost in extra-time, we would be disappointed because we’d done well in the game,” he added.
“But now you don’t feel it as much physically. I don’t think we will be mentally or physically tired.
“We have three days to prepare before Norwich, which is enough time.”