ARSENAL starlet Reiss Nelson has revealed Raheem Sterling is inspiring him to make a Premier League breakthrough.
The forward, who scored for England U21s in their 3-3 draw with Croatia as the Young Lions bowed out of the Euros on Monday, impressed on-loan at Hoffenheim last season.
Nelson, 19, scored seven times for the Bundesliga outfit and is now prepared to return to the Emirates next month for pre-season.
Now the teen has revealed how Manchester City and England superstar Sterling has been playing a key role in helping him to reach the top.
Nelson said: “Raheem is a role model to a lot of young lads coming through. He gives me little messages on Instagram, like ‘keep going’.
“I was training with the England team a couple of times and he is there always giving encouragement.
“It is always good to have people like him in and around the England set-up to give you the pat on the back that you know you are doing well and good things are coming.”
After struggling to break into the first-team fold on a regular basis at Arsenal, Nelson took full advantage of his opportunity at Hoffenheim.
And even though he admits it was a wrench to leave the Bundesliga after an enjoyable campaign, he is determined to make an impact under Unai Emery at the Emirates.
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Nelson said: “It was difficult leaving (Germany) but Arsenal are my team and I want to go back to Arsenal and play.
“I have got a bit bigger. I was playing at Arsenal when I was 17, when he (Arsene Wenger) gave me my debut against Southampton, so I was very immature when I was playing.
“Now I have a more mature role about me. I look to play link-up play, one v ones, and I think I am more mature.”
He added: “In Germany we had a leaving party, which was nice. A lot of other players were going to different teams.
“They had a video and gave me a Nelson signed framed shirt as well. It was really good stuff.”