English Premier League side Arsenal are once again hoping to raise awareness about knife crime in London with a special kit.
Arsenal and Adidas launched their No More Red campaign for this season on Friday, January 6. It aims to shine a light on the work being done around North London to keep young people safe from knife crime and violence.
The centerpiece of the campaign is an all-white kit that the men’s team will wear in their FA Cup match against Oxford United on Monday, January 9. All the applications on white base are also white, including the Adidas shoulder stripes, the club crest and the sponsor logos on the chest and sleeve.
Arsenal’s women’s team will also wear No More Red pre-match kits and anthem jackets prior to their FA Women’s Super League match against Chelsea on Sunday, January 15.
The men’s team wore similar white kits in an FA Cup match against Nottingham Forest in January 2022. Those kits had white numbers with thin black outlines on the back.
Like last year, the all-white shirts will not be sold in stores or online. Instead, they will only be given out to people who volunteer with one of the club’s charity partners. Read about last year’s shirt recipients here.
“Young people face multiple challenges as they grow up in today’s world and we don’t have all the answers, but we are confident our work makes a significant contribution to the lives of our participants,” said Freddie Hudson, head of Arsenal in the Community. “Our hard work must continue and we’re proud to be building on the achievements of the first year of No More Red by adding more social action projects and a volunteer programme that broadens the reach of this powerful initiative.
“Combining decades of expertise with the incredible support from adidas, will help more individuals make better, informed choices about their future. We’re also sending a strong message that by pursuing your talent and focusing on aspirations, young people can have bright futures and become role models themselves.”
According to Arsenal.com, while the number of teenagers who died as a result of violent youth crime dropped significantly in 2022 compared to the year before, the number of reported knife offences climbed to 11,502 between January and November 2022.
The No More Red campaign works to provide safe spaces in London for young people to participate in sports, to provide better access to trusted role models, and to recognize individuals making a positive difference in their communities.
“I understand that some are very good kids getting led astray. They see crime as a resolution, but they need to see the bigger picture and seek opportunities,” said Arsenal supporter and professional boxer Anthony Yarde, who grew up in London and saw first-hand the type of criminal activity that No More Red is trying to curb.
“I think community is very important because people need people. When people come together in a positive way, it’s powerful. It can be powerful in different ways — for businesses, families, sports and any other gathering you can think of.
“Campaigns like No More Red are so important because they shine a light on the opportunities that are actually out there. In my opinion, it shines a light on choices.”
UPDATE (January 9, 2023): When Arsenal took the pitch on Monday, the kits they were wearing were slightly different than what was shown in the photos above. The Adidas logo and club crest were solid black, and the sponsor logos on the chest and left sleeve were outlined in black. The numbers were white with a black outline and a grey drop shadow. A red Emirates FA Cup patch appeared on the right sleeve.