adidas released a bunch of new national team shirts this week, with the likes of Argentina and Colombia receiving new threads for use in 2021. There’s already been plenty of chatter about the bold new look for Argentina, which features a camo pattern within the famous sky blue stripes, whilst elsewhere on the continent the new Colombia home shirt has left many kit fans underwhelmed (despite a welcome return to a richer yellow colour).
Both releases have generated little more than a drop in the ocean’s worth of discussion compared to what’s happening over in Mexico however. The new Mexico home shirt contains only the slightest hint of green in the the crest, despite it being the traditional base colour for El Tri shirts down the years.
Instead, the palette of choice consists of a black base in combination with a shocking pink. In isolation, the bespoke design has quite a lot going for it with an aesthetic inspired by traditional textiles. The style of the pattern also matches nicely with the latest adidas player-issue/authentic ‘waffle’ material. It’s the designation of the kit as Mexico’s new home shirt however that has ruffled more than a few feathers.
I mean, we’ve seen a couple of recent black designs designated as Mexico home kits (inc. the most recent shirt), but the new pink number takes the biscuit. pic.twitter.com/OYty9Uo94w— Phil Delves (@phildelves) March 22, 2021
For decades, Mexico has been associated with green kits typically trimmed with white and white. There have been some notable deviations, including two black home kits in 2015/16 and 2019/20 (see above), and several away kits of the past have ran with some sort of burgundy affair, but the new black and pink effort represents the biggest departure from tradition yet.
Despite the surprising direction, many people were quick to point out that “Mexican pink” is a thing. There’s even a Wikipedia page for the shade, which describes the colour as “an element of national identity and a symbol of Mexican charisma”. Unfortunately this story went largely untold through official channels, and though it’s still notable to see a Mexico home shirt that isn’t green, it goes to show that there’s often more to a shirt than first meets the eye.
that color is also known as rosa mexicano (mexican pink) and its not only traditional but also part of our identity. you can find it in toys, decorations, candies, flowers, traditional accesories or clothes, etc— mundo (@mundo8a) March 23, 2021
i think that here in mexico it’s even more representative than green pic.twitter.com/zOYnbgCjb5
There was also a fun fan theory doing the rounds, which built on the idea that the latest Mexico home shirt is the last part of a trilogy of black home shirts with secondary colours drawn as vibrant interpretations of the colours of the Mexican flag…
Time will tell as to how we’ll remember this unusual period of Mexico’s shirt history, and a likely new kit for the 2022 World Cup (should Mexico qualify) will almost certainly appease traditionalists and quieten much of the current bumsement, but for now the armchair critics (myself included) are out in full force, and it’s not a pretty sight.
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