JW Diaries: Open training session and kit launch

Thursday started off with an early morning trip to the Singapore Supporters Club HQ ‘Five Square’ where the Arsenal media team organised a Q and A session with Ray Parlour.

There was 7 fans representing various supporters clubs from around the world; I was invited to attend on behalf of the UK Gooners. This will be shown on the Arsenal web site at some stage.

Arsenal are very good at these events as well as the other fan activities; they always ensure that any UK fan that makes the long trip get invites and tickets if they request them.

A few more beers were consumed and it gave us the opportunity to meet some old friends from various countries around the world as well as making new ones.

After a afternoon nap, still trying to shake off the jet lag, we made our way to the stadium. Before a few beers at a local bar, we went to the Arsenal merchandise stall and a tour tee shirt was purchased.

I meet up with a friend who runs the stadium and was told that ticket sales for this match was slow but Saturday’s is going well with a near full house expected.

Before I left the bar, I was informed that teamsheets were delivered to my seat; a massive thanks as always to Damian!

I thought that we played well and was unlucky not to win. Like last year in Shanghai, we were unaware that there was to be a penalty shootout; it appeared that the player were also unprepared as the pens were awful.

Some good individual performances though with high praise to debutant Emile Smith-Rowe who capped off a fantastic display with a signature long range goal. I’ve seen Emile play at an early age at the academy, he really is the real deal.

Beers and karaoke was the way we saw out the night with Friday being another packed day.

There’s a Fan Zone at the Promenade Park which concludes with the 3rd Kit Launch followed by a dash to the stadium to watch an open training session and rest assured, plenty of alcohol in between!


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