Last week, we spoke to designer Rick Banks about his fantastic new book Football Type 2, and in true Football Shirt Collective fashion, we followed up the conversation with a chat about Rick’s first and favourite football shirts. This interview was part of our My First Football Shirt series.
Easy. The Bolton Wanderers 2007 home shirt, worn by the likes of Nicolas Anelka in Europe.
Like my work and philosophy as a designer, I love its minimalism. It was 90% white with angular, sporty sharp flashes of red and blue on the shoulder and neck. Even the sponsor, Reebok, which started in Bolton, has been stripped down to the bare basics, i.e. Rbk. I just wished I designed some bespoke lettering for the club to use in the UEFA cup. I also loved how the away versions were the same template with subtle colour changes. And that’s why I have 5 versions of the shirt.
It’s the 1995 Football League Division play-off final between Bolton and Reading. It was my first experience of Wembley and I took everything in. As a 10 year old I had never experienced anything like it before. The atmosphere was electric, something the new Wembley failed to replicate. The game itself had everything. 12 minutes gone and we were 2 nil down and I thought ‘that’s it. Then Reading get a penalty. Now I thought ‘this is definitely going to be it’. Dead and buried. However Keith Branagan stepped up with a mighty save. That was the turning point in the game.
After 75 minutes, on to John McGinlay, whose cross arrowed to the far post, where Owen Coyle rose to head home. Game on. The force was then with Bolton. In the 86th minute Fabian De Freitas, the rangy Dutch substitute, equalised following a flowing move begun by Alan Stubbs and accelerated by Alan Thompson. De Freitas's finish dragged the game into extra time. I was ecstatic and don’t think I’ve ever celebrated like that again. The game continued in pace and magnificence. Again another McGinaly assist with a header back to Mixu Paatelainen who nodded over Shaka Hislop. 3-2. But it was De Freitas again who sealed our fate when he knocked in a near post strike. We finally gained promotion to the Premier League.
Thanks to Rick for taking the time to speak to us. Check out the fantastic Football Type 2, and check out our marketplace for great deals on vintage shirts here.