Jul 15, 2013

Santos 2012/13 Home Kit - Player Issue

Front view

Back view

Santos crest and an inscription relating to the club's centenary.

Caption inside the collar.

This 'T' only features in the player issue version.

Nike's laser-cut ventilation holes.

Neymar Jr. wearing the shirt during the past season.

-Founded: 14 April 1912 
-Honours: 3 Copa Libertadores (Last one: 2011); 3 Brasilerão (Last one: 2004) 
-Biggest rival: São Paulo 
-About: The first colors chosen for the new club were white, azure blue and golden lemon. But the difficulty to fabricate the colors on the uniform during those times forced a board meeting a year after the club's foundation. The president of Santos based the club on the new colours, white and black.

Despite I'm a Real Madrid supporter, I must say that I've been looking forward to get this shirt more than any other one in the collection.

When my Brazilian mate Henrique asked me for a Málaga shirt, I thought he could be able to get me the Santos third kit with Neymar #11 printing, but then he told me that the player issue home shirt was on sale, so I took the second option.
The only downside was that while the shirt was on the way, Barça signed Neymar. I didn't really want him for Real, but neither for Barcelona.
And thanks a million to Henrique (whose collection you can see here), who helped me to get this incredible shirt!

-Season: 2012/13
-Brand: Nike
-Special features: Player Issue version features (laser-cut side perforations, Dri-FIT fabric, heat-transfered Swoosh and club crest...) and Neymar Jr. #11 official printing.
-Where to buy it: Netshoes
-Approximate price: $53 / €40 / £35

Jul 14, 2013

Levante UD 2011/12 Third Kit

Front view

Back view

The only embroidered element in the shirt is the crest.

'A future to conquer' and the centenary logo.

Navarro during a matcha gainst Mallorca.

-Founded: 9 September 1909
-Biggest rival: Valencia CF
-The team's earliest games were played at La Platjeta, near the docks on a plot of land owned by a perfume entrepreneur. Its next ground was also near the port area, and the club gradually began to become associated with the working class.

During the time I spent in Valencia I found this at an outlet store for just 15€, and obviously bought it. This shirt has probably the worst quality I've ever seen. Absolutely every detail of the shirt, except the crest, is printed on the fabric, even the LFP patch, so at the first moment I thought it was a fake.
2011, just one year after their return to the first division, was the first time in the club's history it reached the highest ranking in the top division – in the process, they recorded seven straight wins after drawing the first two games. The club eventually finished in sixth position and qualified for the Europa League for the first time in its history. So it's nice to have a shirt from a season which Levante supporters might be proud of.

As I'm going on holidays, it will be difficult during the next month to keep posting on the blog. But it's difficult for me to forget about shirts, so I'll try to update my Twitter account (@s_footballshirt) as much as possible.
By the way, a really really really cool shirt from Thailand is on the way.

Jun 27, 2013

Valencia CF 2012/13 Home Kit

Front view

Back view

Embroidered crest.

Joma authenticity seal.

'Amunt València' means 'Go Valencia', so quite original.

-Founded: 18 March 1919
-6 Spanish Leagues (Last one: 2004)
-Biggest rival: Levante UD
-In the 1950s, Mestalla (their stadium) was restructured, which resulted in a capacity increase to 45,000 spectators. Today it holds 55,000 seats. Valencia was scheduled to move to a new stadium in the north-west of the city in 2010. Construction of the 75,000-seat Nou Mestalla was halted by financial constraints, however, and the future status of the project remains indefinite.

I did a short trip to Valencia last month (for those who don't know yet, Spanish coasts are pretty cool to spend there some weeks) and I was able to purchase a pair of shirts.
Since the start of the season I wanted this one, so I went to a department store and bought it for about 40€. I'm not a big fan of Joma but I think they did a pretty good job with this. I have to add that the big MSC sticker on the sleeve, apart from ruining a bit the shirt, is quite uncomfortable to wear.

Jun 21, 2013

Real Sociedad 2003/04 Home Kit - UCL Edition

Front view

Back view

Real Sociedad's embroidered crest.

UCL patch, which is very different from the current ones.

You can see Xabi Alonso, Nihat Kahveci or Valeri Karpin in there.

-Founded: 7 September 1909
-2 Spanish Leagues (Last one: 1982)
-Biggest rival: Athletic Club

-The club name means Royal Society of Football in Spanish. The club is nicknamed in Basque as Erreala or the txuri-urdin ("white-blue" due to the colours of their kit). The colours stem from the flag of San Sebastian: a blue canton on a white field.

Wow, is like more than two months since I posted my last shirt... this is a bit akward. I've just haven't found the moment to post during this time, but finally I have some free time, so I'll show the shirts I've purchased.

Gabriel, a German collector, contacted me to tell me about the shirts he was selling. I fell in love with this one, we came to terms and I bought it for 40€.
(You can have a look at the rest of Gabriel's shirts here) 
And as you can see, it's a really rare shirt. I'll try to find an official name and number to print on it.
Hopefully Real Sociedad will do a great performance at the UCL next season :)

Mar 31, 2013

AC Milan 2012/13 Third Kit

Front view

Back view

Milan's crest.

Inscription inside the collar.

The coolest thing on the shirt: an Italian flag which ends in a pocket.

Pato wearing the shirt during its launch.

-Founded: 16 December 1899
-7 European Cups (Last one: 2007); 18 Italian Leagues (Last one: 2011)
-Biggest rival: Inter Milan
-The club was founded as a football and cricket club on 16 December 1899 by English expatriates Alfred Edwards and Herbert Kilpin, who came from the English city of Nottingham. In honor of its English origins, the club has retained the English spelling of the city's name, as opposed to the Italian spelling Milano which it was forced to bear under the fascist regime.

I had the opportunity to get a shirt of a club from Milan, and obviously I wasn't going to choose any of the plain Inter's kits. They told me it had been very easy to find the shirt because Milan has several stores around the city, and even a two-storey building called Megastore. I think this is the first shirt with a pocket on it I've ever seen, and I really really like it.

It's the 33rd shirt in my collection... I don't really have any superb shirt or anything you couldn't easily find on the Internet, but I feel my collection starts growing faster and every new shirt I receive thrills me like the first one, and that's what really matters :)

I'm going to start focusing on Spanish teams and Asian teams. I suppose there will be more offers now that the season is ending... I have an eye on some shirts like Levante, LionsXII (from Singapore), Villarreal and some former Soviet countries.

Mar 25, 2013

Nigeria 2006/07 Home Kit

Front view

Back view

Nigeria Football Association's crest.

Teamgeist logo.

Obafemi Martins during a match.

-First official match: 28 May 1950 
-Honours: 3 African Cup of Nations (Nigeria 1980, Tunisia 1994 and South Africa 2013). 
-Highest FIFA Ranking: 5th (April 1994) 
-Lowest FIFA Ranking: 82nd (November 1999) 
-Highest Elo Rating: 14th (May 2004) 
-Lowest Elo Rating: 87th (December 1964) 
-Top scorer: Rashidi Yekini (1984-1998) - 37 goals 

I said I was gonna buy the shirt of the ACN champions. I'm a man of his words, and here it is. I was wondering about the streets of Madrid when I found a little sports shop with many rare football shirts (such as Mexico, Nigeria or Spain of the 2006 World Cup). Nigeria was the only one that fitted me, so I took that one for just 15€. But it wasn't until I arrived home when I realised I had kept my promise.
The shirt is no big deal, just a normal template, as Adidas has been doing with Nigeria during the past few years.

Mar 22, 2013

China 2008/10 Away Kit

Front view

Back view

Chinese flag and Chinese Wall pattern detail.

Chinese words at the back. I don't really know what does it mean.

Chinese player Gào Lín during a match against South Korea.

-First official match: 4 August 1952
-Honours: 2 East Asian Football Championships (South Korea 2005, Japan 2010).
-Highest FIFA Ranking: 37th (December 1998)
-Lowest FIFA Ranking: 109th (March 2013)
-Highest Elo Rating: 26th (October 2001)
-Lowest Elo Rating: 80th (December 2008)
-Top scorer: Hǎo Hǎidōng (1992-2004) - 53 goals

Well, after some many busy weeks I've found a moment to post new shirts again. This one comes from Brad (whose collection you can view here), who was selling some of his shirts. I could get this one just for £10, quite a good price for a China shirt.
It's a decent one, althought China shirts have been improving in the past few years. Adidas didn't work a lot on this.

I'll try to keep posting my latest purchases: Nigeria (ACN Champions!), Milan and a Santos player issue shirt.

Feb 22, 2013

Zanzibar 2008/09 Home Kit

Front & back view

Crest of the Zanzibar FA.

 Text on the back of the left shoulder.

Coolest leopard print in years.

A classic.

Aarhus FC and Hummel on April Fool's Day.

-First official match: March 1961
-Honours: 1 CECAFA Cup (Rwanda 2005)

-Highest Elo ranking: 117 (August 2011)
-Lowest Elo ranking: 171 (November 1992)
-Non-FIFA team 

-Read more on Wikipedia and on their official site

I've been a bit busy with exams so I haven't posted anything in the last few weeks. During this time I've bought a China shirt to Brad, who has been selling part of his collection through eBay.
But I return with this incredible Zanzibar shirt, the coolest one I have in the collection. Not the most beautiful, but the coolest shirt. When I wore it for the first time, my teammates asked me where did I buy that drag queen costume. A shirt from Zanzibar, full of leopard print, made by Hummel and which costs a few pounds on Lovell Soccer. What else can you ask for?

Feb 5, 2013

Gibraltar 2010/12 Home Kit

Front view

Back view

Gibraltar FA's crest.

The flag of Gibraltar.
I found this delicious Danish receipt in the Hummel label.

Typical Hummel 'arrows'.

Gibraltar before a match against Isle of Wight in the 2011 Island Games.

View of the Rock of Gibraltar.

-First official match: April 1923
-Honours: 1 Island Games (Rhodes 2007).
-Non-FIFA team
-Top scorer: Lee Casciaro

-Read more on Wikipedia and on their official site

I couldn't pass up the opportunity to get this Gibraltar shirt (and the Zanzibar one I ordered), as it's the first non-FIFA shirt in my collection (you can still find it in lovellsoccer.co.uk and in their eBay shop)The shirt reminds me of a rugby shirt, but it's quite average. Apart from that, I really appreciate Hummel's commitment with minor national teams, such as Gibraltar, Zanzibar, Afghanistan or the previous Tibet shirt. This is my first Hummel shirt but I hope it's not the last one.

The collection is in a good moment, as I've had a small profit to spend on shirts and that stuff. As I said in Twitter, I will buy the shirt of the ACN Champions and, if I still have enough money, I'll purchase something more special, like a retro shirt or something like that.