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'I want to be an Arsenal legend' - Mexican youth star Flores reveals Gunners dream and Saka influence

23:53 GMT+3 10/12/2020
Flores Arsenal GFX
The midfielder has high hopes for the future after getting his first taste of senior level football with the Gunners over the summer

Marcelo Flores has outlined his ambition to become an Arsenal legend while revealing the influence of Bukayo Saka and Per Mertesacker on his career so far.

Flores signed his first professional contract with Arsenal in October, having enjoyed a rapid rise through the club's academy ranks at Meadow Park following his move from Ipswich Town in 2019.

The 17-year-old, who has scored three goals in his first 12 outings for the Gunners' U18s, was invited to train with the senior squad in pre-season, and he is now hoping to build on that platform by making a big impact at Emirates Stadium in the near future.

“It was like a dream training with the first team, I couldn't believe everything that was happening," Flores told Goal.

"After training, it went well for me, I went out to play as normal. I am delighted, enjoying all the moments that I am living.

"Right now I don't know (when I will debut), let's see how things turn out. I want to play and become a club legend."

The Mexican teenager went on to credit Arsenal and England winger Saka for playing a key role in his development over the past year.

"I see Bukayo, he is a very good role model for me. He is the best person to talk to, we text and we talk a lot," he said.

"He worked very hard to get where he is. He gives me advice and shares his own experiences so I'm ready for whatever is coming”.

Flores also expressed his gratitude towards Arsenal academy director Per Mertesacker, as he added: “He is a very good friend, he helped me enormously.

"I am grateful to him because he believed in my abilities, he gave me a lot to be what I am now."

The former Ipswich starlet wants to break into Mexico's set-up as he progresses at Arsenal, and has already received positive feedback from those in charge of the national team with regards to stepping up to the international stage.

“I haven't heard anything yet. But I am working hard for that call and live that experience," said Flores.

"A couple of people from the Mexican Football Federation have called me and told me to keep working, and something good will come soon".

Quizzed on the similarities that have been drawn between him and former Mexico striker Carlos Vela, the talented young forward responded: “They still remember Vela, but they never made the comparisons to me before.

"He is a great player and I love seeing him, but we're different. [My favourite position] is the No. 10 behind the strikers, although I don't mind doing it as a winger to be in one-on-one situations."