Some time ago, my brother's Pasta Paulie blog contained a cool posting on the colours of football kits and there were several suggestions for the worse kits. The grey kit of Liverpool, any kit from Bradford City, Newcastle United's yellow away kit instantly spring to mind. So, the bad ones have been covered here's my top 10 football kits. By the way folks.. I make no apologies for selecting quite a few nostalgic retro shirts before the days of corporate branding...
I know, I'm biased coming from Blackpool, but this tangerine kit from the 1953 FA Cup Final worn by the great Stanley Matthews is simply sensational. The new kit will also look great in the premiership next season when the 'pool get promoted through the play-offs.
The instantly recognisable kit of the great Brazil conjures up images of Pele, Zico, Socatres, Kaka, Ronaldo amongst others who match sublime skill and trickery on the ball. This kit stirs up my first memories of watching the 1970 world cup finals and seeing Brazil playing mesmorising football. I still love the kit and watching Brazil.
The purple kit of Fiorentina is synonomous with the Serie A team from Florence. I couldn't think of any other team playing in purple until I saw Malaga playing the other night and noticed their away strip was also a purple shirt with silver lettering and black shorts. It's a very cool and stylish kit. It doesn't surprise me an Italian team wears it with such panache.
The 1970's Ajax kit. During the early 70's Ajax were the instigators of 'total football' which took Dutch football to new levels of skill and left the rest of football in their wake. This kit was worn by the great Johann Cruyff, Johan Neeskens and Johnny Repp in establishing the Amsterdam team at the forefront of European football. Another distinctive kit from one of the great European teams.
Barcelona's kit is unique in that somewhat against corporate tradition, it has historically never contained advertising for a sponsors brand name. More recently, Barcelona signed up to an agreement to have the UNICEF logo on the shirts and in the bargain donate a few million dollars a year to the charity. For that alone, Barcelona's kit makes my top 10.
Some kits stir up images of passionate football in front of passionate fans. I'm not a great fan of kits containing the colour green, but make an exception with Celtic's kit. A major force in Scottish football and the first British club to lift the European cup.
Ok, I'm unashamedly biased and there's a hint of sentiment when I selected the Manchester United Munich Memorial shirt from 2008. United wore this one-off kit against the local Manchester City derby and it was iconic for a few reasons. The kit featured no logos, no sponsor names or player names or numbers the emulate the kits worn by the busby babes in the 50's. The Man City team as a mark of respect did likewise. Proceeds from charity auctions of the shirts worn by the players on the day was passed to the families of the players and staff killed in the Munich air disaster. Pity Man Utd lost that day!
Strange choice for a Man United fan, but I've always loved the Manchester City kit. I love the light blue shirt edged in white and the white shorts which doesn't seem to have changed throughout the years. The similar colours of the Lazio kit share the regal-like classy look.
I found out recently that when West Ham was first formed as Thames Ironworks FC, they wore dark blue. A player's dad was a bit of a sprinter in his youth and whilst working up in Birmingham, ended up having a bet with the players of Aston Villa that he could run faster. He won the race, the Villa players couldn't settle the debt so gave the gentleman a set of football kits instead. The claret and blue of West Ham was born (well...borrowed from Aston Villa). Some of the greatest English players of all time have worn the claret and blue of West Ham.
Inter Milan just shaded it into my top 10 kits over their derby rival AC Milan (similar kit with red stripes). AC Milan's kit has too much of the Dennis the Menace about it for me. Inter's 1970's kit with the overly large Italian badge and gold star just looks the epitome of Italian cool.