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William Saliba and Bukayo Saka both got new shirt numbers on Thursday, after Arsenal released their 2020/21 Home Shirt.
Arsenal posted a new shirt reveal and announcement on their club website on Thursday, whilst also confirming changes to squad numbers for William Saliba, Bukayo Saka and Mohamed Elneny. Not that we hadn’t seen the shirt already!
Saka wore 77 this season, as he was still technically part of the u18 age group. Arsenal number their u23s and u18s alphabetically, pushing the u18 Saka close to the very end of the scale. However, he’ll now drop one number and take seven instead.
New signing Saliba, who spent the season on loan with Saint-Etienne, takes the number four. That’s what he wore with his old club, so it makes sense. The centre-back wore 17 when he trained with Arsenal earlier this season, but Cedric Soares has that now.
That switch left Elneny needing to change numbers. Although the midfielder is on loan, he had the number four before he left. He’ll take 25 now, but most probably won’t wear it as he seems likely to move on again this summer.
It’s a show of faith from Arsenal in a couple of their youngest squad members. Saliba is only 19, whilst Saka is 18, but they both have squad numbers in single digits. Let’s hope it’s a sign of their bright futures to come with the club.