I’m late, late for a very important date! I’ve missed the start of the English Premier League season, now on crappy NBC, with my annual soccer kit fashion review! But alas, here it is! So, please enjoy this random tangent from my regularly scheduled rants and complaints!
*These are not in fashion rank order, but actually where the teams sit on the table as of 8/28/13*
Their third is nothing to get excited about, unless you were in love with metallic crayons as a kid.
Liverpool Their red home is simple, and well made with the right shades or red and yellow/gold and a classic liver-bird crest. Also, to rub salt in the wounds, Suarez. Heh.
I like purple, and this one isn’t bad, but I really want to know why Warrior thought creepy, misshapen parallelograms were the way to go this season.
The Spurs keep it simple with their clean, white home kit, made by Under Armour, which for some reason lays claim to the sleeves as well.
Bright blue for their away, and WHAT THE HELL IS UP WITH ENGLISH SOCCER AND PARALLELOGRAMS???
Compared to previous years and the tablecloth designs, this is a welcome simple red. However, on a deeper look, it’s not so simple, and ManU gets horrifyingly hipster, with a button-down collar and an under-collar fabric design. No.
Oh, wait, no, the tablecloth returns for their away. Just in black and navy this time, because Manchester boomed on fabric factories, blah blah blah, tablecloth.
Classic claret and blue from Adidas for the Hammers home kit. Classic and easy to look at.
The away is not a looker, with claret highlights but way way way too many fabric panels, so that it looks like a quilt. I don’t often comment on short pairings, but this kit jersey/short pair is hideous.
West Ham adds a third kit, which is your typical black third, without the away kit’s fabric panels. It works.
Southampton keeps it simple with a red Adidas home, and a black away, and while I really like that they change the crest colors to match the kit colors, I have to seriously question the away kit’s deep white v-neck, with Adidas logo planted within that v.
Man City knows it’s colors and it keeps true to it in simplicity. Light blue home kit with appropriate white and black piping works really well (it helps to have a complementary sponsor logo).
A two tone black away with gold features is a classy and really superb looking away option. Man City is in the running for best kits this season.
I just don’t get the sleeve design on Arsenal’s kits the last few years. They are too long, the proportions of colors on the sleeves are awkward, and I hate them. Also, the Champion’s League font and numbering this year is terrifyingly ugly.
Aston Villa (automatic winners because I’m biased like that.)
The home is not my favorite, but it works. It’s different than what we have seen before, and the claret and blue works.
The away took some getting used to, but I really really like it and will probably buy it. Doing checks/squares/quadrants is actually hard to do right on kits, and this is a job well done. The goalie kit is meh, I actually cringe at how they add the black band on part of the collar to ‘mirror’ the away. Don’t. Other cons on these kits are the sponsor logo placement change on the away – that’s dumb, and the shoulder Macron logos, which on kits supporters buy, deteriorate quickly and look all messy.
The homes are their typical red/white stripes and nothing dramatically changes this year. Although, I really do hope they fix the stitching on the Barclay’s badge white panels on the sleeves, that looks half-assed.
Their away is black with some solid highlighter yellow complements. But, srsly, Stoke ‘electri’city? This is the Premier League, not League Two ya’ll.
This team is the Blue Birds. Sooooo, yeah, let’s have red home kits. The design is not bad, but not good, and their crest is way too small and high on the chest.
Their away and third are the same design, but different colors, with a basic kit design. Underwhelming.
The aways, with red and white dominating combo, actually really work for me because the spacing between red on the chest mirrors the spacing between the traditional Adidas three-stripe shoulder. Although, my first thought was, oh, I stumbled on FC Dallas’s images, and that’s never good.
Los Tigres! Orange and black for their homes and formal tiger stripes, but seriously, why the big black patch on the sleeves… that looks so baaaaaaad.
The aways are blue with some white and red additions and details, and are overwhelmingly meh.
Classic Everton blue home kit, with white detailing as usual, although I have to say I get a case of the Arsenal sleeve jitters with this kit… the proportions are just weird to me.
… why are Everton and Arsenal both trying to kill me? Everton also goes with a yellow blue pairing for their aways, and while the chest-to-sleeve stripe does line up which works in theory, it doesn’t look the greatest on these kits in action.
The potential winners of most hilarious kit reveal photos, the Canaries homes are their typical green/yellow ensemble, with a lotta green, but overall, a good design. But, seriously, where are the aftermath pictures of the kids gnawing off the professional’s legs at the shin guard, or the kids flying through the air after a high slide tackle to the face?
Norwich continues their press photo hilarity, with this classy white/black away kit. I actually really like this one, it’s clean, and the sponsor logo blends much better into this one rather than like it does on their home.
The winner for most traditional and basic goes to Sunderland’s homes. Clean white/red striping. That’s it.
They lose it though when Adidas forgot they had to provide Sunderland with an away kit too, and pulled something out of the ugly highlighter yellow bin at the warehouse. This one is a trainwreck.
West Bromwich Albion
Purple and white stripes feature on this home kit for West Brom, and I do have to say, that despite all of Adidas’s missteps this year, I appreciate that they are putting all the crests in the right place on these stripes, cut directly down vertical middle.
Sunderland, take note. This is how you change things up year to year when your classic design is stripes. Newcastle adds a splash of blue to their traditional black and white striped home.
Their away is a jersey-looking blue with a couple bright highlights, but I have to say, I don’t get the decision on the fabric here. I really don’t.
Coming in with their red/blue colors is a landmine for designers, and unfortunately, Avec did not avoid it this year. The home kit is garish, and the yellow highlights are bad.
The away is a black with red/blue sash (this is how you do red/blue combos), and while I would usually complain about the crest being moved too far up the shoulder, it works here because it would sit awkwardly on the sash if it had stayed where it was.
The winners of the “GET A NEW FREAKING SPONSOR” award, Swansea has a nice looking white/black home kit, but they completely lose their minds with this purple/yellow away kit that has a terrible color block/geometric design. Also, Goldenway, their sponsor, needs to get a life and not have their stock market ticker as their logo… that thing ruins everything, including this dog’s birthday.
And there you have it, the annual kit fashion review for the Premier League. You are welcome, and I’ll see you in a year for the next round of the terrible, the good, the meh, and the “What drug did Adidas give their designers this year?”