Young Arsenal trio excited facing Barcelona in UEFA Youth League quarters

It will be a homecoming for three of Arsenal's youth team after their UEFA Youth League win over Shakhtar Donetsk this week.

It will be a homecoming for three of Arsenal's youth team after their UEFA Youth League win over Shakhtar Donetsk this week.

The young Gunners defeated Shakhtar 3-1 on Tuesday in their round of 16 playoff to set up a quarterfinal against Barcelona.

It will mark an emotional homecoming for three of Arsenal's players, with Jon Toral, Hector Bellerín and Julio Pleguezuelo all former Barca juniors.

Fullback Toral and centre-half Bellerin signed for Arsenal in January 2013, while young attacker Pleguezuelo made the move last summer. Gunners chiefs are taking the UEFA Youth League seriously, having played Bellerin, fresh from his loan at Watford, and senior winger Serge Gnabry in the XI that defeated Shakhtar.

Barca, meanwhile, reached the quarterfinals after thumping FC Copenhagen 4-1. Munir El Haddadi struck twice barely days after agreeing a lucrative contract, rejecting the interest of Arsenal and Real Madrid in the process, as reported by Sport.

Bellerin, 18, has initially extended his loan with Watford to the end of the season before he was recalled by Arsenal last week. The Spaniard could not hide his delight at the looking quarterfinal tie on Twitter last night:

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