Rob Holding has revealed how he reacted when he first found out Arsenal were interested in signing him back in 2016, stating that he didn't know who Arsenal legend and then assistant coach Steve Bould was.
After playing just one season of Championship football with his former side Bolton Wanderers, Holding was snapped up by the Gunners for an estimated £2m. Holding hasn't always been a first team star at the Emirates but, under new manager Unai Emery, the 23-year-old has become a regular feature of the Arsenal back line.
"It was Dave Lee who was my Under-18s coach. He pulled me to one side and said: 'Steve Bould's watching.' I didn't even know who Steve Bould was!
"That's how ignorant I was. I didn't know who he was. I said to my dad that Steve Bould is watching. 'Steve Bould?! Arsenal centre-half legend!' And I'm thinking: 'Ooh, I'm sorry! I don't know!'"
The Arsenal defender then relayed what his former coach told him: "He said: 'He was in the stand and he was talking to him and they're really liking the look of you and they're watching you.'"
Holding made his debut for Arsenal on the opening day of the 2016/17 season against Liverpool and, although he ended up being on the wrong end of a 4-3 defeat, the defender still has fond memories of that day.
"I was thinking: 'I've never been to the Emirates before.' And then I was walking out in front of 60,000.
"That was the first day I'd been to the Emirates and I was walking around the stadium, full crowds and I was thinking: 'Is this it? Is it the best thing yet? Does it get any better than this?'"