By Lloyd Webb
If it were not for Hugo Keto, Arsenal might not be in the quarter-finals of the FA Youth Cup.
The Gunners went to penalties in their fifth-round tie against Coventry City, but the goalkeeper’s heroics saw him save three spot kicks.
Steve Gatting’s side now host Liverpool at Emirates Stadium on Friday, having beaten them in the final of the 2009 Youth Cup.
I hope everyone will want to come and watch us. My mum and dad will be there. It will be kind of like playing for the first team as we will be playing at their stadium and it will be a little touch of what it would be like to play for the first teamHugo Keto
Keto hopes the game – which will be screened LIVE on Arsenal.com and the App - won’t go the distance this time, but would be more than comfortable in the same situation.
“I would be pretty confident if we went to a penalty shoot-out,” he told Arsenal.com. “I think for a goalkeeper, it is one one the best feelings to save a penalty.
“It is like scoring a goal for us! To save three of them was really good and to help us to get through to the next round was a big thing and probably one of the highlights of my career so far.
“I was pretty calm actually when they were stepping up. For a goalkeeper, you can’t really get the blame if a penalty goes in but you are a hero if you save it. There is nothing to lose for a goalkeeper in a penalty shoot-out.”
Keto had trials at Liverpool before signing for Arsenal in 2014, and says winning the FA Youth Cup would be the defining moment of his career.
“I was actually there on trial before I came to Arsena,” he said. "I didn’t see the team because it was already off season when I went there. I was just working with the goalkeeping coaches but I don’t really know too much about them. We will watch some clips about them.
“I think we have a really good chance of making it to the final and winning the cup. It would be the biggest thing in my career so far along with the transfer to Arsenal. I know that the FA Youth Cup is a really big thing here in England and everyone is expecting us to do well.
“It will be a massive moment for me to play at Emirates Stadium, too. It was nice to play away at Anderlecht’s Stadium [with the under-19s] which is a nice stadium but this will be even better.
"I hope everyone will want to come and watch us. My mum and dad will be there. It will be kind of like playing for the first team as we will be playing at their stadium and it will be a little touch of what it would be like to play for the first team.“Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source