Wearing red gives lovers and athletes winning edge

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The Independent Online

All things being equal, Arsenal should be the winner of this year's FA Cup Final against Manchester United if scientists are right about the colour red.

All things being equal, Arsenal should be the winner of this year's FA Cup Final against Manchester United if scientists are right about the colour red.

A study has found that wearing red gives male athletes an edge against equal opponents, and Arsenal has won the right to wear the red strip at the Millennium Stadium this Saturday. Liverpool will also wear red against a white-clad AC Milan in next week's Champions' League final.

Red is the colour of sexual dominance in many animals and testosterone-fuelled human athletes are no exception, according to evolutionary anthropologists Russell Hill and Robert Barton of Durham University.

In a study at the 2004 Olympics they found wearing red gave male athletes an advantage against opponents of similar ability who wore blue.

Dr Hill said: "There is a deep-seated or innate response to attribute bright red coloration to dominance."

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