Alex Iwobi says Europa League glory with Arsenal is his 'dream'
By Joe Tanner
Last Updated: 22/05/19 6:27am
Alex Iwobi is aiming to fulfil his childhood dream of winning trophies for Arsenal as they prepare to face Chelsea in the Europa League final.
Iwobi, who has been with Arsenal since 2004, is relishing the chance to play in Arsenal's first European final since the Gunners lost to Barcelona in the Champions League in 2006.
The 23-year-old Nigeria international has already won an FA Cup and two Community Shields for the club he has been involved with for most of his life, but is now targeting more silverware.
When asked about his excitement ahead of the final on May 29, Iwobi said: "To be here and have an opportunity to play in such a big final is great.
"I've had many dreams of winning things for Arsenal at a young age. I never thought I'd make it this far.
"Every trophy to us is special, we always want to do our best and win as many as we can, and the Europa League final is another one we can win."
Arsenal arrive in Azerbaijan following their 7-3 semi-final aggregate win against Valencia.
Joe Willock, Eddie Nketiah, Emile Smith-Rowe, Charlie Gilmour, and Ainsley Maitland-Niles are all homegrown Arsenal academy products who have featured in Arsenal's Europa League campaign this season.
Iwobi believes the Gunners' success in the competition should provide inspiration to young players at the club who are eager for first team opportunities.
"It's great, not just for me but also to show youth in the Arsenal academy that they have a chance to play at this level," he said.
"So for players like Joe Willock, there are a lot of opportunities and if you keep on believing, you can make it or even do better than me."
The Baku final will be the last game for Petr Cech at Arsenal, who will become a sporting director at Chelsea when the season finishes, and Danny Welbeck, who will be available for a free transfer in the summer window.
Iwobi added: "Petr's been a legend, not just for us but also for Chelsea, so I'm sure he'll have a lot of feelings going into the game and there will be no better way for him to sign off than winning the Europa League final - against Chelsea as well, that would be great.
"As for Welbs (Danny Welbeck), it'll be a great feeling for him to even play, especially given he's always had unfortunate injuries.
"This will be his first game back, so if the manager decides to let him play, it'll be a special moment for him."