By Connor Armstrong
The best players like to play on the biggest stages – and they don’t come much bigger than Emirates Stadium.
It is certainly something Chris Willock can’t wait to experience again as the under-23s return to N5 to face Liverpool on Friday night, in a game screened live on Arsenal.com.
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The 18-year-old has started both of the team's matches so far this season and is looking to put points on the board against tough opponents in north London.
"It’s always good to play at the Emirates, because it prepares you and gives you a taste of what it’s going to be like to play in the first team."
“I’m excited to play at the Emirates and to play against Liverpool,” Willock told Arsenal.com. “It’s always good to play at the Emirates, because it prepares you and gives you a taste of what it’s going to be like to play in the first team."
Willock has already enjoyed some of the trappings of first-team status, travelling with Arsene Wenger’s squad on the pre-season tour to California, with the forward attracting praise from Jack Wilshere.
“That gives you a lot of confidence going into the season so hopefully I can take that in,” Willock said. “It’s always nice to hear stuff like that coming from such a good player and someone I look up to, who has also come through the academy. I know I need to keep working harder to try to get into the first team.
“Jack always knows his next pass and I’m trying to put that sort of stuff into my own game. He’s very good on the ball, so I watch him and copy him on stuff like that.”
The Gunners have faced Reading and Manchester City in Premier League 2 action so far, but are still pursuing their first win of the campaign.
“I think we’ve been a bit unlucky,” Willock said. “We’re getting used to the new league and I think it’s been difficult. We’ve improved from the first game to the second game, I’ve seen that and we’re only going to get better.
“I don’t think you should go off past results [against Liverpool], they’re a very good team and they’ve got some good players, but I think we can beat them and we’ve got the team to beat them.”
The under-23s face Liverpool at Emirates Stadium on Friday evening in what promises to be an entertaining fixture.
The game will be shown LIVE on Arsenal.com, but you can get tickets here.
Our live video stream of the game will be free to view for all Arsenal Members.
Click here to register for FREE Digital Membership.
The show starts at 6.45pm (UK time) with Joel Beya and Ladies star Alex Scott presenting from the Emirates. Russell Hargreaves and Max Jones are on commentary from 7pm.
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