Emirates will be helping to connect Arsenal fans in Asia and Africa with their heroes after it was announced that the carrier will be the Presenting Sponsor of the club’s summer tour.

The Arsenal 2012 Tour, Presented by Emirates, will provide an opportunity for many the club’s huge following of international supporters to see the likes of Robin van Persie and Theo Walcott in action for the first time.

The tour kicks off in Malaysia on 24th July when the club plays a Malaysia XI in Kuala
Lumpur. Arsenal will then travel to Mainland China, a country Emirates serves with 35 weekly flights to three cities, including Beijing where Arsenal face Manchester City at the ‘Bird’s Nest’ Stadium on 27th July.

Arsenal’s final match in Asia will take place in Hong Kong against the local champions Kitchee FC on 29th July.

The London club will then make their first visit to Africa when they travel to Abuja, the capital of Nigeria, to play a game on 5th August, giving Arsenal’s large Nigerian fan base the chance to watch their team play.

“The tour will make it possible for Arsenal’s loyal supporters in Nigeria, Malaysia, Mainland China and Hong Kong to see their heroes in action. Coincidently, in the same year that we began our relationship with Arsenal, we launched our first service to both Nigeria and China. And like Arsenal, we have enjoyed a strong and growing relationship with both of these countries ever since,” said Boutros Boutros, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications.

“Arsenal Football Club is delighted to be expanding our long-term partnership with Emirates through our 2012 Tour. We are fortunate to have such a strong global partner who is as committed to these key markets as we are. We are all excited to be visiting Malaysia, China including Hong Kong, and Nigeria, countries with many loyal Arsenal fans, who will now have the opportunity to see their team play live in the summer,” said Arsenal‘s Chief Commercial Officer Tom Fox.