Why Arsenal are playing in white kit vs Nottingham Forest in FA Cup tie


Arsenal are playing in an all-white kit as part of the 'No More Red' campaign

Arsenal are playing in an all-white kit as part of the ‘No More Red’ campaign (Adidas/Arsenal)

Arsenal are wearing an all-white kit for their FA Cup tie against Nottingham Forest as part of as part of a campaign called ‘No More Red’ to combat youth knife crime in London.

The kits, which have made with support from adidas, will not be going on sale to the general public and players’ shirts will be given to people and organisations who have been identified as making a positive change in the community.

Last week, it was announced that 27 teenagers died from knife attacks in London last year – the highest level since 2008.

Arsenal legend Ian Wright and actor Idris Elba, who supporters the Gunners, are both backing the campaign.

‘The idea that Arsenal are going to come out in an all-white kit and say ‘No More Red’ will hopefully make people think ‘Hang on, what’s going on here?’ – then look further and try and find out more,’ Elba told Sky Sports.

‘I hope it makes an impact that ripples into other football clubs and inspires other collaboration ideas, and investment in practical things to help young people, whether that’s football pitches, or youth centres like the one I went to in Forest Gate where I played sport and where I actually fell in love with film.

Arsenal's one-off kit will have no traces of red

Arsenal’s one-off kit will have no traces of red (Adidas/Arsenal)
Arsenal’s ‘No More Red’ kit will not be sold to the public (Adidas/Arsenal)

‘We need to give young people, especially teenagers, another option and an alternative to knife crime and gangs. It’s about what we can offer them as an option.

‘The reasons why they [adidas and Arsenal] are doing this really resonated with me.

Arsenal have joined the campaign to help tackle youth knife crime (Adidas/Arsenal)
Arsenal’s kit will be donated to community organisers (Adidas/Arsenal)

‘I’ve got a big youth following and people always say to me: ‘Idris, you came from the same place I came from, how did you do it?’ And, it’s the same with the footballers.

‘To see these two giants say we want to do something significant, specific to the culture of football, that says we are watching, we care, we want to do something – that really resonated with me. It really did.’

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