This prospect can be an Arsenal star for years, says club captain

Mikel Arteta believes that Hector Bellerin will be Arsenal's first-choice right-back for years to come if he fulfills his promise.

Mikel Arteta has backed Hector Bellerin to be Arsenal's long-term right-back. 

Bellerin has come into the first-team squad at the Emirates this season and seemingly has impressed since making the step-up from the youth-team. 

The 19-year-old made his Arsenal debut back in 2013, but he had to wait over a year to make another appearance. 

That was in the side's 2-0 defeat to Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League, in what was a tough match for the whole team. 

Bellerin was by no means the worst performer on a bad evening for Arsenal, where they were shown up against top-level opponents, but he did look a little out of his depth.

However, Arteta has backed his Spanish compatriot to bounce back from that disappointment and prove himself to be a key player for the Gunners in the future. 

“I think he's a top player,” Arteta said to the club's official site. 

“He can be the right back of Arsenal for many years in my opinion, provided he gets the chance. Mentally, he handles what is requested to play at the highest level. He's got pace, he's got technique and he's a very positive guy.

"I talk to Hector a lot. He's been around for years and we've been talking to each other for a long time. I know him well because he's taken part in pre-season a few times with us already.

“He's a very confident guy and we treat him as any other player because he's part of our squad. Hopefully he's going to become a top player at the club.”

Bellerin could make his third appearance for Arsene Wenger's men when they take on Southampton in the League Cup tonight.

The full-back is expected to be part of the squad who take on the Saints and he will be hoping to prove that he can provide enough quality to fill the void left by Mathieu Debuchy's injury.

The Frenchman has been ruled out for three months with an ankle problem and Bellerin may be fast-tracked into starting contention as a result.

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