Prodigal son Ramsey relishing a return to Cardiff with Arsenal in FA Cup showdown

23 January 2009 03:38
Aaron Ramsey Coach Geraint Twose worked with Ramsey - nicknamed Rambo by his peers and staff at Cardiff - from the age of 13, around four years after he first joined the club. 'It quickly became clear Rambo had superb technical ability and was physically outstanding,' said Twose, who is now the under 18s coach and assistant Academy manager for the 12 to 16-yearolds at the club.   More. Arshavin finally set for Arsenal as Zenit will accept improved ?15m offer Cardiff v ARSENAL: Gallas fit again and ready for Gunners return ARSENAL FC NEWS FROM ACROSS THE WEB 'When he joined the under 16s at the start of last season, we had him in that group for three days. He played a friendly against the first team on the Saturday and then he was due to come with us to a pre-season tour of Scotland on the Monday. 'But the first team were so impressed by him that he went to Portugal on their tour and that was that. It was fantastic to see him progress so quickly. Aaron Ramsey 'If youngsters are good enough, the pathway is clear for them to progress as the manager has the faith to throw them in if he believes they can succeed. 'Rambo is a perfect example of that and we use him as a role model for the current crop to aspire to. They looked up to him when he was here anyway because he had such ability and was always playing with the age group above where he should be.' The midfielder has not been a regular but can celebrate several significant milestones in his fledgling career. Having beaten John Toshack's record as the youngest player ever to play for Cardiff, Ramsey has played in an FA Cup Final (the second youngest in history), scored his first Champions League goal and become a key component of the Gunners' Carling Cup side - all before his 18th birthday last December. Although he is yet to start in the Premier League, six substitute appearances suggest he is on the fringes of regular involvement in the first team and his Cup cameos have earned comparisons with captain Cesc Fabregas both in playing style and temperament. 'We get a lot of good kids here and what sets one apart from the other is their mentality,' added Twose. 'He was never overawed by anything and always wanted a challenge to try and better himself. The sky is the limit because his attitude won't let his talent down. 'He is still in touch with one or two of the players here and will no doubt get a great reception when he comes back on Sunday.' Ramsey's career is becoming synonymous with the FA Cup after his appearances with Cardiff last season (left) and a central role in Arsenal's 3-1 win over Plymouth in round three. Scroll down for more Aaron Ramsey He said: 'It was a great experience for everyone involved with Cardiff. We did very well together and we were unfortunate not to get the win at Wembley. Hopefully I can do well in the FA Cup with Arsenal as well, get another chance to play on Sunday against Cardiff, show what I can do and stake my claim for a place in team. 'I was at home in the living room watching the draw with my parents. My dad actually called it When it came out, I had loads of texts about the game and now I'm really looking forward to it. 'Cardiff City was a big part of my life. I was there for a long time. I came through the youth system there and went on to get into the first team. So it will be mixed emotions for me on Sunday, but I am an Arsenal player now and I want to win the game.'   More. Arshavin finally set for Arsenal as Zenit will accept improved ?15m offer Cardiff v ARSENAL: Gallas fit again and ready for Gunners return ARSENAL FC NEWS FROM ACROSS THE WEB  

Source: Daily_Mail