Report: Arsenal to visit Uganda on pre-season tour?


Arsenal could be set for a pre-season visit to Uganda, according to the country’s National Council of Sports.

Bosco Onyik, who chairs the body that regulate’s Ugandan sport, told Chinese news agency Xinhua that a new partnership with the Gunners, set to be ratified in March, will also see the Premier League club open a local academy.

“We went to London last month on January 16th and had three meetings with management of Arsenal FC with the aim of partnering with them,” explained Onyik.

“We agreed that they will train some of our coaches, give the Uganda Cranes chance to train at the Emirates Stadium in London, build an academy and also have their team to visit in June next year to tour Uganda and play some matches.”

Arsenal hasn’t played in Africa since July 1993 when Tony Adams, Anders Limpar, Paul Merson and co. beat Manchester United, Orlando Pirates and Kaiser Chiefs on a pre-season tour that included a meeting with Nelson Mandela.

There were plans to tour Nigeria in 2012 but that was shelved due to security and logistical concerns. To apologise for the cancellation of the game in Abuja, the Gunners sent Per Mertesacker, Tomas Rosicky, Lukas Podolski and Bacary Sagna to dance. There was a promise at the time that the club would return for a game in 2013, but that never materialised.

More recently, in 2017, the Arsenal Foundation partnered with the Family of Hope – a school for children with special educational needs – to build new football pitches in Uganda.

We’ll keep you updated if we hear more on this story, we’re also waiting on confirmation of Arsenal’s participation in a friendly in Singapore.


Lead picture of Ugandan Arsenal fans, courtesy of @AshBhardwaj. Full series of pictures can be seen here

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