As the old saying goes, “hindsight is a wonderful thing”, and that’s certainly the case when looking back in history at some of the best and worst ever World Cup kits.
Some kits go on to become cult classics. Others should just be consigned to history.
A few of this summer’s crop could easily fit into either bracket (we’re looking at you Team USA).
But here we’re allowing the test of time judge World Cup 2014’s efforts and opting instead to take a trip down memory lane.
Surely the red shirt worn by the heroic World Cup winning Three Lions in 1966 should make the cut? Far too clichéd in our opinion.
Besides, the image of Paul Gascoigne wiping his tears on the diamond-emblazoned cloth does a far better job of summing up the prevailing emotions felt while watching England.
Don’t listen to the haters in other rundowns. We’re also fans of the red numbering and navy blue shorts – proper retro.
Les Bleus’ World Cup triumph on home soil was sealed in this resplendent offering, a kit that gave a nod to the European Championship heroes of 1984.
Michel Platini and co wore a similar outfit during their success in France and copying that formula worked wonders with horizontal stripes and red flourish adorning both generations of players.
The fact is you could pick out any number of Brazil kits. But if forced to choose our favourite golden oldie, we’d have to go for this version from Mexico 1986.
A cracking soft collar combines with this perfect pair of pale blue shorts. Quite simply, the most successful team in World Cup history playing the beautiful game in a beautiful kit (OK, that’s enough now -Ed.)
…and the worst
Mexico Goalkeeper (1994)
There’s plenty to be said about eccentric Mexican goalkeeper Jorge Campos. But since we don’t have the scope to write an essay, we’ll just stick to short, sharp facts.
This self-designed effort from Mexico’s 1994 World Cup campaign is just plain insane, a garish monstrosity from a man who should never have been given crayons. Or the masterstroke of a maverick. You decide.
In an era of awful kits, this Germany effort stands out as one of the worst. Adidas have a lot to answer for with their diamond design an infamous blot on their copybook during the tournament in the USA.
The colours of the German flag feature prominently around the neck with this ugly and suffocating scarf symbolic of the team’s failed World Cup campaign.
Often the Indomitable Lions’ 2002 kit (with added sleeves to appease the suits at FIFA) makes the list of worst World Cup kits.
But keen to keep our fingers on the pulse we’ve opted to include this year’s set of garments instead.
Obviously Mexico and South Africa’s respective efforts from World Cup ’98 didn’t put the designers off following similar principles.
However, in our opinion, patterned shirts are always a massive no-no.
Like our selections? Tweet @williwycombe with your opinions or comment below!
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