Arsenal revealed its away kit for the 2008/09 season, which is based on the iconic kit worn when the Club won the League Championship in dramatic style in 1989. The kit sees a return to a yellow and blue shirt, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Club winning the League in the last match of the season at Anfield on 26th May 1989. To mark this special occasion, current Arsenal stars lined up for the promotional photoshoot alongside legends from that great night including goalscorers Alan Smith and Michael Thomas.
Produced by manufacturers Nike, the kit features a yellow and blue shirt with a red stripe down the sleeves and body. ‘Gunners’ is stamped on the neck and, as with the new Arsenal home shirt, this kit brings a welcome return to the Club's motto 'Victory through Harmony' from the Latin inscription 'Victoria Concordia Crescit', which is included in the inside neck of the shirt. The kit is made from Nike Dri-Fit, an innovative technology that enhances player performance by drawing sweat away from the body through to the fabric’s surface to evaporate, while its three-dimensional construction allows for more air space around the skin to reduce clinging.
Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas said of the ’89 League win: “I was only two years old on that famous night, but I know the players are legends, everyone loves them and we all hope that we can do the same with this team. It is always a great feeling when you score or win a match, so imagine what it feels like if you win the League in those circumstances. Every player would like to live a moment like Michael did.”
Michael Thomas, Arsenal legend and scorer of the late dramatic goal at Anfield in 1989 said: “I get asked about the goal once or twice a day if I’m lucky! The feeling among the squad heading up there was fantastic. A month before George Graham had changed the back four to a back five so it was great for us attacking midfield players, we just had to attack and have no fear. Bringing the trophy back south was an honour in itself for me, it was just fantastic.”
Ex-Arsenal forward Alan Smith, who scored the first goal at Anfield in ’89 said: “It’s wonderful that this match is not just Arsenal folklore, but football folklore in general. Liverpool were the dominant force at the time and had a fantastic team. I remember going up on the coach and there was an element of ‘nothing to lose’. A headline in a newspaper that day was ‘Men against boys’, so we took that up and put it on the board in the dressing room! “George Graham told us just before we went out for the match to have no regrets, go out there and enjoy it and that’s what we did. It was just amazing to be involved that night. It was a great night for Arsenal Football Club, but I also remember the great acts of sportsmanship by Liverpool. Many stewards and police at Anfield congratulated us on the pitch, it was a very emotional time, and the Kop gave us a standing ovation which just shows the class of Liverpool. When we eventually got into the dressing room, the champagne was flowing and the journey back down the M6 and M1 just went like a flash.”
The first 500 supporters that buy the away kit in an official Arsenal store on 1st August will have the opportunity to attend a screening of the historic match from 1989 at Emirates Stadium later that day*. The evening will also feature a Q&A session with Paul Merson and Alan Smith — players from that remarkable night.
The new away kit is priced from £40 adults and £33 junior sizes. Arsenal’s flagship store The Armoury, along with the All Arsenal Store and The Arsenal Store Finsbury Park will be open from 9am — 6pm on 1st August, with The Arsenal Store St Albans open from 9.30am — 5.30p