Arsenal and Manchester United bridge a 27-year gap

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Tonight’s Premier League game between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford will be a meeting of two classic colour-schemes, with the Gunners thankfully wearing their yellow change kit rather than navy as they did against Liverpool.

David de Gea will wear his purple first-choice goalkeeper kit. That is deemed to clash with Arsenal’s dark green primary netminder’s kit and so Bernd Leno will wear blue – which has seen more action than the green.


The game is of course the first meeting between the sides since Arsenal renewed their partnership with adidas after a 25-year gap. In 2015, United rejoined forces with the German firm, having had Umbro and Nike in the 23 intervening years.

Arsenal’s change kit is of course based loosely on the ‘bruised banana’ kit, worn at Old Trafford on October 19, 1991. The sides drew 1-1 with David Rocastle opening the scoring with a great individual goal and Steve Bruce levelling for United.

The last occasion when the clubs met with both in adidas was at Highbury on February 1, 1992.


Both strips were coming to the end of their two-year lifespans, though Arsenal had added a ‘league champions’ scroll underneath the crest for 1991-92. United were in the infamous ‘Madchester’ blue and white change strip, while both goalkeepers were in the same shorts and socks as their team-mates – this would change for Arsenal in 1993-94 and for United a year later.

Brian McClair put title-chasing United ahead but David Rocastle’s equaliser ensured a point for Arsenal. While it meant that they had gone seven games without a win – four draws and three losses, the game proved to be the start of a 17-game unbeaten run between then and the end of the season.

They would finish fourth while the Red Devils were pipped to the last ‘old’ Division 1 by Leeds United.

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