We hope you're staying safe and well during these challenging times.
Our thoughts remain with our supporters who have been impacted by Covid-19 and especially those who have lost loved ones.
Wednesday sees our return to Emirates Stadium for our Premier League fixture against Norwich City. While we are excited to return to play our first home game since March 7, we all feel the sadness of you not being there with us. It just won’t be the same.
We have done everything we can to ensure your presence is felt by the team and the small number of staff working. We all still need that feeling of togetherness to power us all through until the end of the season.
A huge thanks to the many supporters’ clubs and fans who have sent in their banners and flags to dress the upper tiers which complement our stadium wrap which proudly displays our club crest, cannon and motto, Victoria Concordia Crescit, something which feels as relevant today as ever.
The display features the words and chants we would normally hear ringing around the stadium on a matchday and shows our support for Black Lives Matter, our gratitude and support for the NHS and our club partners.
Fans from our supporters’ clubs and local community will feature on our perimeter boards clapping the team as they enter the pitch so players see fans’ faces and feel your presence. Supporters from across the world will also feature on screens via Zoom calls on our big screens.
And while our Junior Gunner mascot won’t accompany the captain as players emerge from the tunnel, a photo mosaic of our young supporters will feature outside the dressing room so our youngest fans are represented too.
Thank you to one of our supporters who also suggested extending a welcome to our opposition by placing their flag in the away end, which will also be in place for our remaining fixtures against Norwich, Leicester, Liverpool and Watford.
We are deeply saddened that some of our fans are no longer with us. During this pandemic, we know we have lost 47 fans to Covid-19. Sadly, there are probably many more around the world. The 47 will all be remembered in our matchday programme and during the 47th minute of the game when their names will be displayed inside the stadium on our perimeter boards. The club has been in contact with the families of those we’ve lost to express our sincere condolences and they will be remembered on Wednesday night.
We will also pay tribute to one of our own, Theo Foley. We were all saddened by the news that he passed away at the age of 83 last week. We remember him as George Graham’s assistant between 1986 and 1990. A highly respected coach, Theo was a hugely-popular member of the dressing room and one of our heroes from our title-winning season of 1989. The team will wear black armbands on Wednesday evening and we will remember him in a moment of silence for all those we’ve lost since we were last together.
Arsenal historians trace our matchday programme right back to the 1889/1890 season and playing games behind-closed doors doesn’t mean we will stop this important tradition.
We are producing a 64-page programme for our four remaining home games, which can be delivered direct to your home, ensuring you get that special matchday feeling.
These collectible issues are priced at £4 including postage. A free, digital version of the programme and an audio version for our visually impaired fans – and anyone else who wants to listen - will also be available online on the day of each game.
STAY HOME. STAY SAFE.
We encourage you all to get behind the team in your usual passionate way, but please stay away from the stadium and watch the games from home. Our dedicated follow-at-home page features activities to bring us closer together. It goes without saying that it is simply not the same to play in an empty stadium without our fans, but the health and safety of all of us is the most important thing.
We know that many of you have been playing your part during the crisis and we continue to celebrate our heroes by collecting your photos and videos for a special mosaic on our website. It’s inspiring to see the everyday heroes who are going above and beyond to offer support and keep us all safe. Thank you to everyone contributing in your own way.
WOMEN’S CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
The schedule for the Women’s Champions League finals has been decided, with the tournament running from August 21 to August 30 at the San Mames Stadium in Bilbao and the Anoeta Stadium in San Sebastian.
The quarter-finalists will play the remainder of the competition as an eight-team, straight knockout tournament with one-off ties deciding each fixture. All matches will be played behind closed doors.
Our fixtures are as follows:
Arsenal v Paris Saint-Germain
Anoeta Stadium, San Sebastian
Saturday, August 22
Kick-off 7pm (UK time)
Arsenal/Paris Saint-Germain v Lyon/Bayern Munich
San Mames Stadium, Bilbao Wednesday, August 26 Kick-off: 7pm (UK time)
Winner semi-final 2 v Winner semi-final 1
Anoeta Stadium, San Sebastian
Sunday, August 30
Kick-off: 7pm (UK time)
Information regarding broadcast of these fixtures will be made in due course.
After the WSL season was recently curtailed, we look forward to seeing the team back in action in August.
The Armoury safely opened its doors in line with guidance provided by the UK Government and Public Health England last week.
The health of everyone is our top priority and we’ve introduced a number of measures to help protect our fans and colleagues while you’re with us.
The Armoury has been deep cleaned and disinfected and we continue to follow a strict cleaning regime. We are limiting the number of customers in the shop at any one time to help fans keep a safe distance from others and in-store signage will display safety messages and instructions. We have introduced touch-free hand sanitisers and we are asking fans to only handle products they intend to purchase.
All of our team members undergo a daily health check and have been trained to carry out our Covid-19 safety policies. Our colleagues will be on hand to manage queues, answer any questions and help you with your shopping. Protective screens have been placed at the tills to protect fans and colleagues. To prevent unnecessary contact, we are accepting card payments only.
Our opening hours are 10am to 4pm Monday to Sunday. Please note, we will not be open on home matchdays.
We hope the measures we have taken will allow you to shop with us in comfort knowing that we have your safety at the front of our mind. We look forward to seeing you in The Armoury soon.
Take care and stay safe.
Victoria Concordia Crescit
Copyright 2020 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source.