Football’s craziest kits

Stylish finish or fashion own goal? Football’s craziest kits 

Photography: Getty Images

Norwich City’s new third kit has Canaries fans in a flap but it’s just another in a long list of football’s weird and not always wonderful fashion statements

Norwich have prepared for life in the Championship this season by raising eyebrows with the release of their new third kit. Drawing inspiration from a classic number from 1992, the Carrow Road side’s colour-splashed effort has been met with a mixed reaction. It has been described as looking like everything from bus seats to the work of a two-year-old finger painter. 

Football has always thrown up fashion designs ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous, but where does the Norwich version rank alongside some of the craziest football shirts ever?

Sky Sports Football on Twitter

Have Norwich City released the worst third kit of all time? http://skysports.tv/iZPogi pic.twitter.com/a91vdmeyr1

Deportivo Lugo

Classic Footy Shirts on Twitter

Deportivo Lugo's shirt based on a pint of beer went down a treat #footballkits #DeportivoLugo #beer #Espanapic.twitter.com/YGxEHfdqTw

In 2014 Deportivo Lugo from the Galicia region of Spain were sponsored by a local beer and turned up in this number. The goalkeeper kit featured an octopus tentacle, another delicacy from the locality. It gives a whole new meaning to the idea of three points for a win…or should that be pints?

La Hoya Lorca 

Mis viajes en fútbol on Twitter

Next game is at home to La Hoya Lorca, probably only known outside Spain for having a broccoli-themed away kit.pic.twitter.com/T3Lo13Y4tA

Spain seems a hotbed for food and beverage-related football attire. Murcia-based side La Hoya Lorca once turned up in an away shirt featuring a head of broccoli, inspired by the region’s nickname as the ‘vegetable garden of Spain.’  Your mother may have been right all along when she told you to eat your greens, because the veggie-wearers won promotion in the gear. 

Colorado Caribous

Matthew Wolff on Twitter

TBT Best/worst kit of all-time: The 1978 Caribous of Colorado.pic.twitter.com/hxtmy29B29

The Colorado Caribous were a team from Denver who competed in the North American Soccer League (NASL) for just one season in 1978. However, this tasseled top design did little to bring the side luck. They finished with the worst record of any team, 22 losses out of thirty games, and propped up the table at the end of the season before the franchise upped sticks to Atlanta.

Manchester United

Richard Rollon on Twitter

@bbc5live Manchester United's 95-96 season's grey kit which angered Sir Alex Fergusonhttp://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2358826/Seeing-grey-Uniteds-infamous-invisible-kit-voted-worst-time-.html#ixzz48ZOQOgB6 ...

To most, Manchester United’s third kit from 1996 looks reasonably normal. But when Alex Ferguson’s Red Devils found themselves trailing 3-0 to Southampton at half-time, the manager infamously ordered the players to change at the interval. The Scot later claimed his charges couldn’t see each other because of the all-grey design. United went on to lose the game - in fact they never won while wearing the ensemble - and it has since been voted by fans of the Old Trafford club as the worst of all time.

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Hull City

Kit Geekery on Twitter

Hull City Tiger Stripes 1992/93pic.twitter.com/EYjqlbZ2WF

Hull City’s nickname ‘The Tigers’ was taken very literally by their kit designers for the 1991-92 season. Rather than seeing them roar, Hull struggled in Division Three in this animal-print number. The club now takes on the big cats of the Premier League and in 2013 the owner registered to try to change the official name to Hull City Tigers, much to the horror of many fans.

Cameroon

JonnyBoyPatterson on Twitter

@Record_Sport yet FIFA banned Cameroon's 2004 "all-in-one" strip because it wasn't a proper kit.pic.twitter.com/RhnbqAQvQM

The African powerhouse has produced some superb footballers with the likes of Samuel Eto’o top of the pile. In the build-up to the 2002 World Cup, ‘The Indomitable Lions’ sported vest tops but with FIFA’s intervention, at the finals themselves, they were forced to wear a sleeved garment underneath. Cameroon’s experimentation with jersey design didn’t end there. At the 2004 African Cup of Nations, the shirt and shorts were sewn together, meaning Eto’o and co. were basically playing in onesies. It led to a major dispute between kit supplier PUMA and FIFA which rumbled on for months. 

VFL Bochum

VFL Bochum Rainbow Kit

© Getty Images

In the late ’90s, VFL Bochum were sponsored by Faber, a Germany lottery company who wanted to incorporate their multi-coloured logo into the look of the kit. The designers did a great job as the rainbow jerseys of yesteryear have now become legendary. Maybe the shirts were the butt of opposition fans’ jokes, but as a retro-kit that is like no other, Bochum hit the jackpot.

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07 2016 The Red Bulletin

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