To honour Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day, Arsenal Football Club is proud to participate in a number of initiatives to recognise the sacrifices made by servicemen and women who are actively serving, and those who have been injured or killed in action.

Arsenal players will wear a special shirt with a poppy on the chest for Saturday’s game, which recognises The Royal British Legion's Poppy Appeal.  The shirts will be auctioned off via a number of channels in aid of the UK's leading Service charity which provides practical care, advice and support to serving members of the Armed Forces, veterans of all ages and their families.  The charity hopes to break previous fundraising Poppy Appeal records with an ambitious target of £42 million this year.

We are also pleased to announce that the match ball will be delivered to the referee by a member of the Armed Forces.

Just before kick-off, Corporal Aran Rushe will present the match ball to referee Phil Dowd.

Corporal Rushe from The Royal Irish has been sent to Afghanistan in the role of medic with an Infantry Battle group on two occasions and is preparing to again for a third time in March 2013.

During his previous deployments in 2008 and 2010, he has treated and saved the lives of numerous military and civilian casualties.

He was awarded the ‘Children’s Champion Award’ in March 2011 for his heroic actions in saving the life of an eight-year-old Afghan girl named Shifa Khan. Corporal Rushe’s swift action ensured that the girl was stabilised and taken to the military hospital in Camp Bastion.

A lifelong gunners fan, Corporal Rushe attends as many home and away games as possible when his duties allow.

Corporal Rushe is attending today’s match alongside troops from the Army, RAF and Royal Navy – all of whom have been invited as special guests of the Club today through the Tickets for Troops scheme.

Tickets For Troops provides free tickets to the men and women of Her Majesty's Armed Forces for a variety of events as a mark of the country's appreciation for the sacrifices that they make on the general public’s behalf. Since 2009, 110,000 troops have signed up to the scheme and over 290,000 tickets have been distributed.

Arsenal would also like to extend a warm welcome to representatives from Help for Heroes, who are attending the game as guests of the Directors Box.

We hope that you all enjoy the game!

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10 Nov 2012