Q. With all the recent controversy over the venues for the semi-finals of the FA Cup, will the Emirates Stadium be designed to cater for such games? How will the ground be segregated and what will be the ticket allocation for each team? - Mark O'Bornick, via email
A. There are no plans for Emirates Stadium to be used for FA Cup Semi-Finals as the FA have an agreement with the new Wembley to stage all semi-finals there. The new Wembley will officially open for next season's FA Cup Final on May 13, 2006, with Emirates Stadium opening for the start of the following season.
Q. I heard somewhere recently that there will be a Reserve League Play-Off for the first time this season - is this true? Can you tell me if this is true and if so why has it been implemented? - Graeme Pickson, Kent
A. There will indeed be a Reserve League Play-Off at the end of the season for the first time, this has been implemented as a result of The Premier Reserve League's contractual obligation with Barclays. It will be the winners of the Northern Reserve League (Manchester United) versus the winners of the Southern Reserve League (Charlton Athletic) at The Valley. With two games left this season, Arsenal are currently in third place in the Southern Division, and in Arturo Lupoli have the highest scorer in the league with 17 goals.
Q. I am, of course, an Arsenal fan in the Gambia and love to read Arsenal's magazine. My question is, who was the first African to play for Arsenal? Which nationality was he? The year and what were his contributions please? - Alhagie Drammeh, The Gambia, West Africa
A. Certainly Alhagie. The first African to play for Arsenal was Daniel Le Roux, (pictured) who was born in Natal, South Africa in 1933. Daniel, a South African International, was a winger who made five league appearances for the Gunners in 1957/58. He joined from South African side Queens Park and returned to his homeland after his brief stay at Highbury. In all eight Africans have represented the Club. They are: Jehad Muntasser (Libya), Christopher Wreh (Liberia), Kanu (Nigeria), Lauren (Cameroon), Carlin Itonga (Democratic Republic of Congo), Kolo Toure (Ivory Coast) and Emmanuel Eboue (Ivory Coast). In addition, there have also been several African-born players, such as Patrick Vieira (Senegal) and Johan Djourou (Ivory Coast) who play as European nationals.
*** PRIZE QUESTION ***
Q. Thierry Henry wore the captain's armband against Norwich, and I was wondering if you could tell me the last time an Arsenal captain scored a hat-trick? Thanks. - Andy Holliman, Greenwich
A. We asked Arsenal statistician Fred Ollier
who trawled through the history books and found out that the
previous Arsenal player to score a hat-trick while skippering the
team was the great Alex James back in the 1934/35 season. He scored
three in Arsenal's 4-1 home league win over Sheffield Wednesday
February 2, 1935. He regularly captained the team, but this was his only hat-trick for the Club.
Other contenders were Cliff Holton, who scored a few hat-tricks but none during his time as captain. Ian Wright also captained Arsenal on a few occasions, but didn't score a hat-trick while wearing the armband.
Every other programme will feature a Q&A page. So we need your questions! As an incentive to all our inquisitive readers, we will give the sender of our favourite question a T-Shirt from the latest Gunners range in our catalogue. Send your questions (and shirt size) to Q&A at the normal Club address or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.