‘Ever since I was eight, I wanted to play here!'

Bukayo Saka
Bukayo Saka

It has been a whirlwind 24 hours for Bukayo Saka.

The 17-year-old found out in training on Wednesday that he would start against Qarabag, and he admits he has been “buzzing” ever since.

Saka did not waste his chance, impressing with a bright performance on the left wing and he nearly capped it off with a goal.

The teenager spoke to the media after the game and this is what he said:

on his home debut…
It is a dream come true, ever since I joined the club at the age of eight I always dreamed of playing at the Emirates so for all the coaches and the fans to support me tonight was really good.

on his confidence growing throughout the game…
I didn’t start too fast but I grew into the game and that’s what I wanted to do. I started to get past my man and create chances and I could have scored at the end, I don’t know what happened.

on when he found out he was playing…
I think it was Wednesday in training, we went through the team and [Unai Emery] called it out and I couldn’t believe it, but I just had to get on with it. I just focused, and I couldn’t stop thinking about today and how I was going to play, and I think it turned out alright. But I should have got my goal!

on his family’s reaction…
They were buzzing, they couldn’t stop smiling last night but they got me into bed early and we are all just so happy.

on being part of a winning team…
It feels good because we are on a long unbeaten run and we don’t want it to end. Winning, winning, winning, that is our mentality. That’s what the coach says to us, always keep going and keep fighting and that is what we did tonight, we got the job done and we are through to the next round.

on what he needs to do to get more chances…
I think I just need to keep playing well at academy level and any chance I have an opportunity to train with the first team I need to impress the head coach and show him what I can do, so he can believe in me like he did tonight.

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