Elis James’ first Wales shirt is “absolutely lovely”

We caught up with comedian and actor Elis James to talk about 1990 Umbro shirts,  classic adidas Wales shirt and a Mark Hughes volley (by the ex Manchester United man) that needs no explanation.

What was your first football shirt?

1990 Wales football shirt

The Umbro Wales Home shirt, 1990-92. I got it for my birthday after we beat Belgium in October 1990, with Rush, Hughes and Saunders scoring. I still have it! It’s quite similar to the one England wore at Italia ’90, and is absolutely lovely.

What is your favourite football shirt?

1984 Wales

Adidas Wales Home, 1984-87. Everything about this shirt is stunning – classic adidas trefoil and three stripes, and the tight mid-80s fit makes it look iconic. We were a good side in that shirt as well, we beat Spain 3-0 at the Racecourse in Wrexham and came very close to qualifying for Mexico ’86. A close second is the adidas Swansea Away shirt from 1981, that we got promoted to the first division in at Preston – such a classic design, and I particularly love the Swansea badge from that period.

What is your favourite goal?

Mark Hughes’ volley against Spain in 1985, or Alan Curtis’ goal against Leeds, when we beat them 5-1 on the first day of the 1981-82 season. I can’t decide! It was Swansea’s first game in the top flight, and Curtis had had an unhappy time at Elland Road – the look of sheer joy when the ball hits the back of the net is superb. Hughes’ volley needs no explanation – wow.

Check out our SOCCA SERIES prints inspired by classic football shirts.  They’re banging.


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