News Matches

Why are Arsenal wearing all-white kits vs Oxford United in the FA Cup?

4:00 AM EST 1/9/23
Arsenal No More Red 2023
The Gunners are donning an all-white kit in the FA Cup against Oxford, with the familiar red being temporarily abandoned

In modern football, the kits players wear on the pitch during matches have evolved into canvasses where meaning can be subtly imbued and messages can be broadcast to the world.

From the colours and the design to the sponsor, jerseys speak to us in one way or another, with a whole industry predicated on producing fresh looks each season, to be worn at home and away.

If you're tuning in to Arsenal's FA Cup match against Oxford United this Monday, you'll notice that the Gunners are wearing white shirts, white shorts and white socks. The north London side usually wear red and white, while their alternative kits this season are black or pink, so what is the reason for the change?

Why are Arsenal wearing all-white kits?

Arsenal are wearing all-white kits in their FA Cup third round match against Oxford United in support of the 'No More Red' anti-knife crime campaign. It is the second year that the Premier League club have supported the campaign, which was launched in 2022.

The red referred to is, of course, the blood of knife crime victims and the removal of red from the Arsenal kit is a symbolic act.

As well as Arsenal players, the 'No More Red' has a variety of high-profile supporters, including boxer Anthony Yarde, while 'The Wire' actor Idris Elba has also been to the fore in raising awareness for the campaign.

The Arsenal women's team will also wear No More Red gear when they play Chelsea on January 15, with players donning white pre-match training kits and anthem jackets.

"It's great. I think the support the club have given to the community and vice-versa, and the fact that we are constantly doing these kind of things is very important," said Gunners boss Mikel Arteta ahead of the game against Oxford. "It helps keep a lot of people - especially young people - safe in our community."

The Gunners previously wore all-white kits in January 2022, when they faced off against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup.

Can you buy the all-white Arsenal kits?

The all-white Arsenal 'No More Red' kits are not available to buy and will never be commercially available, according to the club.

Instead, the kits will be awarded to individuals who are "making a positive difference in the community".

A number of 'No More Red' partner charities will each have 10 limited edition shirts to give to their volunteers.

What is Arsenal's 'No More Red' campaign?

The 'No More Red' campaign is a joint enterprise between Arsenal and adidas that seeks to raise awareness about knife crime and encourage people to actively work to keep people safe from youth violence.

As well as raising awareness in the fight against knife crime, 'No More Red' is focused on investing in safe places for people to play football, giving recognition to those who make a positive contribution to their communities and developing social action projects.

The following charities are partners of 'No More Red':

  • Arsenal in the Community
  • The Stephen Lawrence Day Foundation
  • Steel Warriors
  • Don’t Stab Your Future
  • Box Up Crime
  • Copenhagen Youth Project
  • St Giles Trust
  • Abianda
  • Octopus Community Network
  • The Ben Kinsella Trust

You can read more about Arsenal's all-white kit and No More Red at the club's official website.