Writer: Tim Stillman
Date:Wednesday March 14 2012
Following on from last month's confirmation of a lucrative pre season friendly against Manchester City, in the opulent Bird's Nest Stadium in Beijing, Arsenal have released further details of their pre season plans with a friendly against Kitchee FC at the Hong Kong Stadium on Sunday, July 29, 2012.
It marks the club's first pre season visit to Hong Kong since 1995. Though you'd imagine this will be a slightly more polished affair from the infamously boozy 1995 pre season tour, in which Ray Parlour landed himself in the cells after a bust up with a taxi driver.
Details of further pre season money spinners are expected to be released in the coming weeks, with the club apparently keen to get to Africa where they enjoy an enormous fanbase. After last season's mini tour of China and Malaysia, this tour looks to be a more full on affair. The dates are notably later in the pre season calendar too, suggesting Arsene is reluctantly releasing the reigns for the marketing department. With FPP sending commercial activities into overdrive, it's a natural step.
Arsenal CEO and big cheese Ivan Gazidis said, 'It`s great that Arsenal Football Club is visiting Hong Kong again after 17 years. We have many followers in Hong Kong and it`s wonderful that these special fans will have an opportunity to see the first-team live in action. The match will follow on from our visit to Beijing, where we play Manchester City in the Bird`s Nest, and is another indication of Arsenal`s commitment to Asia.
"We`re all looking forward to visiting Hong Kong and playing Kitchee will provide the team with good preparation ahead of the 2012/13 season."
Date:Wednesday March 14 2012
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