Julio Pleguezelo says he is taking tips from Arsenal star Hector Bellerin.
Julio Pleguezelo says he is taking tips and inspiration from Hector Bellerin as he aims to make his mark at Arsenal.
Speaking to the club's official website, Pleguezelo, who signed in the summer of 2013, says he is keen to make up for lost time after an injury hit campaign.
Two separate injuries have cost him around six months of action this season, and seen him play only seven under-21 games.
The 18-year-old is however very much in the plans of under-21 coach Steve Gatting, selected whenever he has been fit to play.
Pleguezelo is a defender who can play at centre-back or right-back, the position currently occupied in the first team by another La Masia graduate who Arsenal were fortunate to sign, Hector Bellerin.
He admits he is a little way off competing with the 20-year-old at present, and is just trying to learn from him whenever he can.
The Spain under-18 star said: "I’m so happy for how Hector is doing in the first team now,” he said. “He deserves it and I’m going to try to learn from him. If in the future I have to play right back or centre back, it’s always good to learn from the first-team players.
“I’m working to break into the first team. Hopefully all my injuries are away now and I can just focus on working hard every day, helping my team-mates and just trying to make it.”
Pleguezelo is not the only ex-Barcelona kid trying to make it at Arsenal. Attacking midfielder Jon Toral has been impressing on loan at Brentford, scoring a hat-trick for the Championship side earlier this year.