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Arsenal stars bring sacks of Christmas toys to children at The Whittington Hospital

PUBLISHED: 13:26 23 December 2013 | UPDATED: 13:26 23 December 2013

Arsenal stars Mikel Arteta, Per Mertesacker, Thomas Vermaelen, Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla with one of the children on the ward. Picture: Arsenal FC

Arsenal stars Mikel Arteta, Per Mertesacker, Thomas Vermaelen, Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla with one of the children on the ward. Picture: Arsenal FC

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Arsenal stars took a break from their battle to remain top of the Premier League to deliver Christmas presents to sick children at The Whittington Hospital on Tuesday.

Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny with one of the sick children on the ward. Picture: Arsenal FCArsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny with one of the sick children on the ward. Picture: Arsenal FC

Mikel Arteta, Per Mertesacker, Lukas Podolski, Santi Cazorla, Thomas Vermaelen and Wojciech Szczesny brought sacks of toys for the young patients, some of whom will be forced to spend their Christmas in hospital.

Joined by Gunnersaurus - Arsenal FC’s mascot - the visit has become an annual tradition for the club.

This year they visited the Ifor paediatrics ward which treats children suffering from a range of conditions.

As well as signing autographs and posing for photographs, the players handed out sacks of toys and Arsenal goodies to around 20 children.

Sheila Docherty, play service co-ordinator at the hospital, said: “This visit means so much to the young patients at The Whittington Hospital.

“We would like to say a big thank you to all of the players and club staff who took the time to visit us on the Ifor ward.”

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