FSC Approved – 2019 Anderlecht away shirt
As you may have noticed, Anderlecht are the latest club to feature in one of our Modern Classics drops. The Belgian team are famous around the world for their purple shirts, joining the likes of Fiorentina as one of the key custodians of the shade across world football, and their shirts always have something about them on account of their memorable colour scheme.
For today’s edition of FSC Approved, I wanted to highlight the 2019 Anderlecht away shirt, which laid claim to the rare but notable distinction of beating Sampdoria at their own game.
Yep, you read that right. Sampdoria, one of the undisputed kings of shirts, were beaten by Anderlecht in the 2019 away shirt department.
Both teams have been with Joma for multiple seasons, and back in 2019 the teams both took similar directions for their away kits, as is customary across any brand. Surprisingly, given their lofty reputation, Sampdoria missed the mark they usually hit, and Anderlecht ended up above them in the pile.
Looking closer at both designs, the shirts are virtually identical in terms of construction and pattern from the chest upwards. An inset v-neck collar offers an interesting touch, and outside from some stripe detailing around the back of the neck and cuffs for Samp, the shirts feature the same contrasting panels and dotted pattern. But then we travel further down the shirt.
For Anderlecht, the dotted graphic continues neatly down the sides of front of the shirt, continuing through to the bottom. By contrast, Sampdoria tried to join up the pattern in the middle in a look vaguely reminiscent of the Nike Total 90 kits of the 00s, and it didn’t work. Whereas Anderlecht maintained a sense of decorum, Sampdoria went all in with a gamble that ultimately failed.
It has to be said that the overall colour scheme of Anderlecht is another plus in this comparison. Outside of the crest and sponsor, we’ve got an extremely clean combo of whiet and purple which looks good at every angle. Sampdoria’s similar away shirt suffers from the usage of the colours which are usually so strong on many of their home shirts.
There aren’t many times a team will be better than Sampdoria in the shirt department, but Anderlecht are one of the few who can claim to have done so.
WHAT IS FSC APPROVED?
What makes a football shirt good? It’s a purely subjective question, right?
Whilst there are indeed a lot of subjective elements when it comes to shirts, there are still factors to consider. Sometimes, a design is notable for its unique aesthetic. The colourway, pattern or construction may have gone where no shirt dared to go before it, or it might simply be a particularly good utilisation of a classic approach. Other times, a legendary player elevates a design to immortality, even if the design in question would’ve been hard to pick out of a crowd before.
Our series FSC APPROVED will be a lovingly curated list of shirts that deserve to be in the conversation as good, possibly even great football shirts, no matter who you support or what your taste in shirts is. Old classics, new contenders, if it’s FSC Approved it’s as close to a certified banger as you can get.