Arsenal Defender Jurriën Timber visits Rwanda

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Kigali, Rwanda – Arsenal defender and Netherlands national team player, Jurriën Timber, has arrived in Rwanda for a three-day visit. The trip is part of Visit Rwanda’s multi-year partnership with Arsenal Football Club.

The 22-year old defender is the second Arsenal men’s first team player to visit the country since the partnership’s launch, following in the footsteps of former Arsenal defender David Luiz who visited Rwanda in 2019.

Over the years since the partnership launched in 2018, Arsenal legends Edu Gaspar, Robert Pires, Alex Scott, Tony Adams, Lauren, Ray Parlour, David Seaman, Sol Campbell, and women first team players Caitlin Foord, Jordan Nobbs, Jen Beatie, and Katie McCabe have visited Rwanda.

Jurriën Timber will experience Rwanda’s remarkable hospitality and culture, travel to Akagera National Park to enjoy a Big 5 safari, as well as meet with young Rwandan players and fans in Kigali and Nyagatare to share football experiences and some words of inspiration.

Jurriën Timber will also visit the Kigali Genocide Memorial to pay respects to the victims and to learn more about the Genocide against the Tutsi.

Speaking on his expectation of his first time in Rwanda, Arsenal’s Jurriën Timber, said:

“I am very happy to be here. It is my first time in Africa, and I’m going to enjoy my time here. We have a full program and I’m looking forward to it.” 

Francis Gatare, Chief Executive Officer, Rwanda Development Board, said:

“We welcome Jurriën to Rwanda. He will have a great time in the vibrancy and beauty of Rwanda. Jurriën’s visit in Rwanda avails an opportunity to showcase to the World our country’s energy, creativity and transformation. We also guarantee him a one-of-a-kind experience with some of our most talented young footballers  who aspire to play at his level one day and represent Rwanda on a global stage.”

Visit Rwanda’s partnership with Arsenal, as the club’s inaugural Sleeve Sponsor and Official Tourism Partner has been highly successful in making Rwanda a must-see holiday destination for football fans and tourists around the world.

An independent survey conducted by Hall and Partners of Arsenal fans across 30 markets found that 75% of Arsenal fans were not aware of Rwanda as a tourism destination, and, as a result of the partnership, 51% of fans are now more likely to consider Rwanda as a tourist destination, demonstrating a shift in perception and understanding of the country. In 2022, 1.1 million people visited Rwanda with the country earning over US$ 445 million in revenues.

This success has led the partnership to be nominated for a Leaders of Sports Award, winning the European Sponsorship Association Award in 2020 and a Silver Award at the Football Business Awards 2023 in the sponsorship category.

Note to Editors

To learn more about the Visit Rwanda and Arsenal Football Club partnership at


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