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Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Arsenal prepare Emirates Stadium with banners and tributes to 47 fans lost to coronavirus

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Arsenal have made special preparations for the Emirates Stadium ahead of their first home game since the Premier League restart.

The Gunners have played all three of their games on the road, losing at Manchester City and Brighton before a 2-0 success at Southampton last time out.

Mikel Arteta’s side host Norwich City on Wednesday night as they aim to put together a late run of form to qualify for Europe next season, but they will have to do so without fans in the stadium.

Following the government’s ruling on mass gatherings and social distancing, fans will not be permitted inside stadiums for the rest of the 2019/20 campaign.

But the north London outfit’s ground staff have been busy making sure the supporters’ presence is felt from afar.

Several banners will be displayed around the empty Emirates Stadium Photo: Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Fans from our supporters’ clubs and local community will feature on the advertising hoardings, allowing players to see fans’ faces whilst they are walking out onto the pitch.

Some of the club’s more renowned slogans are displayed around the arena, with a Black Lives Matter banner prominent in each corner. Visiting teams will be allowed to place a banner in the ‘away’ section.

Due to social distancing measures, there will be no mascot to walk out with the team. Instead, the club have created a photo mosaic – using images of the club’s younger fans – to feature outside the dressing room.

Arsenal have also planned a minute’s silence for those who died during the coronavirus pandemic, with special mentions to 47 fans who lost their lives in the club’s official matchday programme.

Their names will also be displayed on the perimeter board in the 47th minute during the game in what is sure to be a touching tribute.

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