Euro 2020 shirt storylines so far
With matchday 1 of Euro 2020 nearly complete, this summer’s competition has already delivered it’s fair share of shirt storylines.
Many viewers delighted at the visual spectacle of Netherlands vs Ukraine, which featured some tasty shirts to match the enjoyable football on show. I’ve also seen people championing the typeface of the England kit; a familiar tale after the success of the 2018 font. However, the biggest shirt story of Euro 2020 so far has without a doubt been the passionate debate surrounding Puma’s away shirts.
There seems to be very little ground when it comes to the subject of Puma, with a small but determined group coming out in support of the controversial new looks and many more voices grabbing their pitchforks. We’ve had several weeks to acclimatise to the new designs, but it seems time has not been a healer for many, made worse by the fact Puma teams seem to be playing so well in the kits (unbeaten in 4 games with 3 wins, 1 draw).
Today though, I want to briefly highlight a much smaller shirt story which deserves to be getting more attention. It comes courtesy of adidas, a manufacturer who often get a bad rep amongst the community for being bland and uninspiring.
From flags to stamps
The three stripes have pioneered a new approach to match details; an area of football shirts which is often quite predictable. As much as I like seeing them every major tournament, the simple text applications with or without flags have looked broadly the same for several World Cups and Euros.
This year at Euro 2020 however, adi have given their teams to the option to use a new style of match details, which sees the typical information of opponent, date and stadium location framed inside a design that broadly resembles a passport stamp. The passport story underpins what is already quite an aesthetically pleasing look, but things get even better when you realise that the outline of the details is also a nod to the respective stadium the teams are playing in.
I never thought I’d be getting excited about match details, but adidas have risen well above their rivals by expressing their creativity in an area of the shirt which is often neglected.
Not all adidas teams have opted to use the new look details, with Scotland and Russia being the two exceptions so far, but as Euro 2020 rolls on I’m looking forward to seeing the variations of the details as teams play in different stadiums.
Imagine if Belgium go on to win Euro 2020 (not an unlikely scenario given Lukaku’s form). It would be fun to see the changes to their shirts as they move on to Copenhagen, and then potential new venues including Wembley if they go deep into the tournament. Unique match details are already one of the most interesting aspects of tournament shirts, but the aesthetics of these new adidas details would take things to another level. The story of a team’s progress would be told in the stadium silhouettes and passport stamps on their kits as they traverse the continent.
For reasons unknown, I’ve not seen adidas themselves talking at all about their new Euro 2020 match details. Though many people will simply scroll past, they ought to be blowing their own trumpet for this move which is one of the most interesting I’ve seen for a long time. It’s certainly something I’ll remember for tournaments to come.