HARRY Arter is determined to learn from Steven Gerrard as he prepares to share a stage with “one of the best midfielders of my generation”.
Gerrard, twice a winner of the competition with the Reds during his illustrious career, could feature when Liverpool visit Dean Court on Saturday (12.45pm).
Should he line up for the Premier League giants, it would hand Arter the chance to lock horns with a player he has always followed closely.
And Arter, 24, admitted it would be a great test of his credentials if he had the opportunity to showcase his skills against the Anfield hero.
Arter told the Daily Echo: “I have watched Gerrard since I was a kid and he is someone I have always looked up to as a player. He is one of the best midfielders of my generation.
“If he plays, it will be really good to test myself against him and I am sure I will try to learn as much as I can from him in the 90 minutes I am up against him.
“When I was growing up, he was quite young and broke into the Liverpool team. From a young age, he has been one of England’s best midfielders.
“Being a midfielder myself, he is someone I have always looked up to. Although we play a little bit differently, he is someone I try to watch as much as I can and learn as much as I can from him. If he plays against us on Saturday, I could see him close up and it would be a really good test to play against him.”
Arter believes that Cherries have grown – both individually and collectively – since regularly plying their trade in the second tier of English football.
And he is hoping Howe’s Championship outfit will be able to show that improvement. Arter added: “In our first season in the Championship, it was important to become better players and become a better team. Without doubt, we have done that.
“Performances have definitely improved – take last Saturday as an example. In August, we lost 6-1 against Watford and, on Saturday, we outclassed them. On another day, we would have scored three or four goals.
“Without doubt, the team has come a long way and, for the rest of the season, I can only expect us to get better.
"Going into next season, the lads will be really confident.”