You've seen the boots, you know the players, now New Balance are offering you the chance to be part of the #NBBlackoutSquad. We recently caught up with New Balance's main man Aaron Ramsey to talk about joining the brand, those unreleased boots, getting in front of the camera, tattoo's and...David Beckham.

Aaron, we're here with New Balance on a cold film set in Manchester - what's going on?

AR: I’m here today to film the first major commercial from New Balance Football that will be coming out very soon. It’s been really exciting and a new kind of experience for me and I'm happy to be a part of it and can't wait to see the what it looks like.

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So obvious question, but why New Balance? You must have had a lot of interest from other brands before leaving adidas?

AR: Yes I did and there were other options, but I decided to join New Balance because I like the direction they're taking. It’s a very family orientated company, all of the people in the team are very helpful and I’ve had a lot of support from them. I feel like I can progress in my career wearing New Balance football boots. 

The #NBBlackoutSquad is an exciting new campaign from New Balance, can you tell us a bit about it?

AR: It’s a competition for young players to have the chance to get the same sort of treatment that I get as a New Balance player and win gear for a year. It’s a great competition that hasn’t been done before so it’s exciting to be a part of it.

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Did you know anything about New Balance's history in football before signing with the brand?

AR: Not really to be honest! All I knew was that they made football boots a long time ago, but it’s obviously been a long time since they’ve been involved in the game. I know Bryan Robson used to wear New Balance football boots but he’s the only name that I know of. He's wasn't a bad player to have wearing your boots though!

It feels like you’ve been wearing the boots for a long time now, what were your first impressions of the boots?

AR: Yes, I think I started with the boots back in October. Firstly I was given a prototype boot to test out for a week or two which we then made a few adjustments to based on how I wanted the boot to perform. It was really important for me to have my own input into the boot which they were very keen on as well so I was delighted with that. We’ve progressed the boot to the modifications that I wanted, so that’s been really helpful to get the boot as comfortable as we can. 

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So what changes have you made to the boots?

AR: We’ve changed little bits and bobs, for example I wanted longer studs and there was a small issue with the heel that needed addressing. To be fair, the New Balance team have been brilliant with me so far, so I’m very grateful that they’ve been able to change the boot to how I want it.

Every New Balance player we’ve spoken to so far has spoken about the comfort, is that always the most important aspect of a boot for you?

AR: Comfort is always a massive part. I’m running around for 90 minutes a match and as a central midfielder I tend to clock up more miles than most in a game, so it’s important for me to be able to run without having any pains or aches in my feet. That’s why comfort is always so important and the way the boot is designed and feels for me is very nice. I’ve enjoyed playing in them so far and I feel good in them as well.

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New boots always get a lot of attention in training, what was the reaction like with your Arsenal team mates?

AR: All of the players were really interested in seeing what they were like and they did their laps around the changing room for sure! People were very curious to see this new boot and I think they were impressed with them as well.

Will you be going on a recruitment drive around the changing room?!

AR: Maybe! I don’t think that’s in my job description though luckily! We’ll see, but New Balance have some fantastic players in their boots already so it’s exciting times.

Today isn’t your first time in front of the camera, you recently did a shoot for Men's Health. Is sports fashion something that interests you?

AR: Sure, that was a case of wanting to do something off the field and you know, sort of take my mind off football at times and when that opportunity came along I said why not. It was something completely different and new to me and I really enjoyed it. It was a bit awkward at times but I enjoyed it and have done a couple more shoots since then!

The modelling side of things has obviously created some comparisons to David Beckham who’s been spending a lot of time at Arsenal recently. What’s he been like when you've seen him around the training ground?

AR: Yeah, he’s been about the training ground a few times over the last year or so. He’s a great guy and when I was injured he sent me a shirt with a message on, so that just shows you the kind of person he is. He always makes time for you and has a chat with you if he’s about the training ground.

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So aside from running through water and screaming down cameras (you’ll see what we mean when the commercial comes out) what else do you like to do in your spare time?

AR: I like to play golf, that’s probably one of the biggest things I do away from the game. I’m playing off 12 at the moment so hopefully I’ll get that a bit lower and be playing off single figures soon. There’s not too much else to be honest apart from simple things like going out for dinner with my wife. We’ve got a puppy now as well so I’ll be walking him around the park most evenings!

You’ve got an impressive tattoo on your left leg which we don’t usually see on match day. Can you tell us about that?

AR: I always wanted a tattoo before I had it done and I was in the process of designing it and I have things on there which mean something to me. It was a pretty painful experience but one that I’m very happy with. Maybe I’ll get some more in the near future.

What about music, what bands are you in to at the moment?

AR: There aren't any new bands in particular that I’m in to, just the same old indie bands! I try and get to as many gigs as I can, I think the last gig I went to was the Arctic Monkeys last year and I’m going to try and get to Glastonbury this year as well.

Finally, we’ve got to end on a football note. What’s the best thing about being an Arsenal player?

AR: The best thing is that we always enjoy ourselves and whenever we go out onto the pitch we always get to express ourselves. That’s a massive thing for me and my team mates and we always try to win in style!

You can find out more about the #NBBlackoutSquad and sign up for yourself right here.