By Rob Kelly
Terry Burton believes the NextGen Series will provide a major test for his young players - and will be invaluable for their development.
The under-19s tournament draws together 24 teams from around Europe to play in a competition that closely resembles the Champions League.
Arsenal are one of nine new teams to enter this season and Burton expects it to be a challenging - but rewarding - experience for his young players.
“It is a very good competition; the organisers have done really well,” he told Arsenal Player. “It is well organised and teams field their best players within the age group.
“You’re testing yourself against the best players, against big clubs and you get different styles, different shapes and different problems to deal with.
“That's what it’s all about; players need feedback, that's how they learn. It should help prepare the players in a small way for European football in the future.”
Arsenal have been drawn against Athletic Bilbao, Olympiacos and Marseille and Burton is looking forward to the challenge.
“I know Athletic Bilbao have a fantastic academy system that produces many players for their first team,” he said. “I am not so aware of what the others do, but I'm sure they will have an excellent recruitment scheme and will prove to be very good opponents.”
Watch the second part of our interview with Terry on Arsenal Player now.Copyright 2013 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 19 Jul 2012