I have some extremely bored family members during this period of lock-down. To entertain them, I thought I’d get them involved with my passion, by asking them for their opinion on classic football shirt designs.
First up is Mum. This is a woman that thinks the current England manager is Gary Neville. She then proceeded to say “No, that’s the England Women’s Manager”. Not quite Mum, not quite. She has absolutely no interest in football, let alone football shirts.
I showed her five football shirts, removing the club crests, and here’s what she thought…
This is the Brighton & Hove Albion shirt worn from 1983 to 1985, which had Brighton-based brewery, Phoenix Brewery, plastered across the front of it. My mum ran a pub in Brighton during the 80s, so you’d think she’d recognise the sponsor… Nope, not even close.
According to her, it looks like a kit that Crystal Palace would wear. Could she offend Brighton fans any more than that? Apparently, the kit is “boring, with too few colours and too much blue”. She doesn’t even like that classic Adidas logo. Is she mad?!
Next up – the stunning USA Away Shirt from 1994.
“I do not have a scooby doo”, was my mums’ initial reaction upon presenting this shirt to her. Although she then proceeded to say that it didn’t look like a football shirt; “it looks more like a baseball or an American football shirt.” It seemed as though she was on the right track, until she decided that it was almost definitely a Newcastle United shirt from the late 90s. I have no idea how she came to that conclusion.
It was a challenge to decide which Fiorentina shirt to show her, but I eventually went for the home shirt from 1998-1999.
Her first comment, “Oh wow, I love Nintenda”. It’s Nintendo, mother.
She didn’t have a clue who wore this shirt, so she plumped for Sheffield Wednesday, based on absolutely nothing. She’s a big fan of the shirt though – “the purple colour is beautiful and vibrant, and the pattern from the sleeves and collar are eye-catching. The Nintendo sponsor matches up well with the red from the shoulders.”
When I revealed which team wore this shirt, she responded with “I’m obviously going to fail this quiz if you are going to show me Florentines”. I’m pretty sure that’s not a Florentine.
Next up is a shirt that often tops the polls for the worst Premier League shirt of all time. That’s right, it’s Norwich City’s egg and cress kit worn between 1992 and 1994.
Miraculously, Mum actually answered this one correctly. She seems to remember seeing Norwich wear this kit recently – “around 2010 I think it was”. So close, yet so far.
Mum thought this was the most interesting design so far. She loves the pattern, and the colours. She particularly likes a shirt with a collar.
We thought we’d end the quiz with a shirt from more recent times. So last, but not least, is the 1874 Northwich Away Shirt from 2019, designed by Phil Galloway.
1874 Northwich and Phil Galloway, you have my mother’s approval. This is her favourite shirt of the lot and couldn’t pick out anything she didn’t like about it. She loves the complexity of the pattern and particularly likes the white patterned section down the side of the shirt. If she was to wear a football shirt, this would be the one. That’s her Christmas 2020 present sorted.
If you want to hear more of her opinions, you can read more by clicking here.