Creative Soccer Culture

Arsenal Honour The Legacy Of David Rocastle

Celebrating and remembering David “Rocky” Rocastle, 20 years on from his untimely passing, Arsenal have released a video with Ian Wright and Bukayo Saka speaking about the legacy of the man so that future generations of players and fans are aware of just what he means to the club.

David Rocastle was an Arsenal legend, and the full time whistle cruelly came too soon for him, when he passed away at the age of just 33. But his legacy lives on, and on the 20th anniversary of his passing, In close liaison with his wife Janet and children Melissa, Ryan and Monique, the Arsenal family have come together to not simply mark the anniversary of his death, but to reflect and commit to continue to grow his legacy and educate a new generation of Arsenal fans, staff and players about the player he was and the qualities he embodied.

Ian Wright and Bukayo Saka, who today wears the famous number 7 shirt worn by Rocastle between 1984 – 1992 came together in a moving conversation to talk about Rocky to ensure the next generation of players and fans remember who Rocky was, what he was and who he represented.  

For the anniversary, David’s family have guest edited the matchday programme ahead of Arsenal’s game against Liverpool on the weekend. Ryan has spoken to a number of former players including Tony Adams, Michael Thomas, Paul Davis and Alan Smith who recall their cherished memories and recollections of David Rocastle, the player and the man.  The programme also carries a heartfelt letter written by Ian Wright to his friend and former team mate.

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As part of the commitment to his legacy, Arsenal in the Community will annually work with seven young people to be guided and mentored via a leadership programme in David Rocastle’s name. Working closely with the young people, the club will provide a unique experience to gain valuable life skills, volunteering opportunities and a chance to stand up and be leaders in their own communities. The programme will be delivered drawing on David Rocastle’s characteristics and qualities by which he’s fondly remembered. 

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Arsenal will pay tribute to David Rocastle on Saturday 3 April at its Premier League match against Liverpool which will also mark the start of the David Rocastle Leadership Programme. 

Daniel Jones

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