By Joe Brewin
Ignasi Miquel cannot wait to feature in the FA Cup for the second season running.
The young defender made his debut in the competition against Leyton Orient last season and has since played in both the Premier League and Champions League.
With injuries to several defenders the Spaniard may start at left back, as he did against Manchester City earlier this season. The 19-year-old believes the FA Cup retains its old magic.
“Of course it has [a special meaning], we know it is the oldest competition and a big thing,” Miquel told Arsenal Player. “If I could be around and play in the FA Cup it would be a big thing for me. If I can get more minutes with the first team it would mean a lot.
“Any game you play you have to go for it, if not there is no point in playing it. I don't know how it is going to go, Leeds are a tough team right now so anybody that plays has to be strong.
“Any game is hard for you, you just have to get out on the pitch, work hard and do everything as best as possible. It doesn't matter what team you are playing against, if you want to win you really have to give everything.”
With experience against the likes of Leyton Orient and Shrewsbury, Miquel is no stranger to the tests on offer in the Football League.
And after Cesc Fabregas’ late penalty salvaged a replay against Leeds last season, the young defender says that Arsenal will not rest on their laurels against the Championship side this time around.
“There are different types of teams but all are hard to get through,” he said. “You can see that lower-league teams are more physical and direct to you and it is not easy to defend.
“You have to be focused all of the time; if you miss one header or one tackle it could lead to a goal. Also if you are winning one or two nil and a team gets back to you it is really hard.
“I think a lower opposition knows how to defend. If they win a game 1-0 they know they have to defend properly so you just have to be focused 100 per cent.”
Watch the full interview with Ignasi 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 9 Jan 2012