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14 November - Scottish Questions
Recently I was sent a couple of photographs that I was was not able to place in the club timelines. The first is of the Aberdeen team in an unrecorded strip sometime in the mid 1960s. I've now established this was worn at Motherwell in March 1964.
More problematic is this photograph of a Caledonian Thistle shirt recently published on the club's Facebook page. It is almost identical to the 1995-96 shirt supplied by Le Coq Sportif but it is branded with the Matchwinner logo (Matchwinner made their 1994-95 kit) and has a different shirt sponsor. Xerox is listed as a sponsor in 1996 on the club's Wikipedia page but no source is offered. I have not been able to find any evidence to suggest this top was ever worn by the team in competitive matches so would welcome any information that might resolve this mystery.
5 November 2019-20 Update
Premier League: Norwich City (charity kit added), Brighton & Hove Albion (1st missing trim added), Tottenham Hotspur (3rd colour adjusted), Aston Villa (3rd detailing confirmed).
4 November - Santos Shorts Madness
We have become used to teams wearing alternative shorts and socks with their regular tops because of the inconsistently applied regulations on colour clashes but when similar rules were introduced in Brazil in 1996, Santos came up with a novel solution. By tradition, the team play in all-white with a change strip of black and white striped shirts teamed with black shorts. Wearing their alternative black shorts with their iconic white tops, however, would be unthinkable as these are the colours of their arch-rivals, Corinthians. To get round the problem the club commissioned three spectacularly novel sets of shorts all of which appeared in matches.
Over the following seasons, the team would wear their change strip rather than disfigure their traditional appearance in much the same way that Liverpool refuse to change any elements of their all-red strip.
In September of this year, for the first time in 23 years, they took to the field against Flamengo wearing white shirts and black shorts. To avoid the comparision with Corinthians, black socks were worn.
My thanks to regular contributor Gabriel Vogas for this material. You can read more (in Brazilian Portuguese) and see photographs of the 1996 bobby-dazzlers on Gabriel's blog, Uniformes Cultura FC.
30 October - Scottish Club Updates
Rangers (2012-14 1st, 2nd, 3rd detailing tweaked), Brechin City (2013-14 shorts & sock trim corrected), Forfar Athletic (2012-14 shirt trim added), Airdrieonians (August 2013 added), East Fife (2013-14 missing shorts trim added), Dundee (2013-14 cuffs removed), Stranraer (2012-13, 2013-14 trim adjusted), Peterhead (2012-13 missing trim added), Falkirk (2012-13 crest corrected), East Stirlingshire (2012-13 socks corrected), Inverness Caledonian Thistle (2012-13 shirt trim added), Clyde (2012-13 3rd added).
24 October - 2019-20 Update
Championship: Fulham (3rd), Leeds United (3rd, special).
League One: Bolton Wanderers (2nd).
Scottish Premiership: Ross County (special).
21 October - Scottish Club Updates
Rangers (2011-12 1st, 2014-15 3rd detailing added), Aberdeen (2011-12 missing shirt trim added), Dunfermline Athletic (2011-12 Puma logos recoloured), St Johnstone (2011-12 detailing corrected), Motherwell (2011-12 shirt trim corrected, 2014-15 detailing updated), St Mirren (socks corrected), Kilmarnock (2011-12 detailing amended), Falkirk (2014-15 trim amended), Livingston (2014-15 shorts trim adjusted), Queen's Park (2014-15 shorts trim adjusted), Greenock Morton (1989-91, 1993-95 detailing added to shorts).
18 October - More Historical Miscellany
Our old chum Tony Sealey has solved a long-standing riddle concerning Luton Town. When the club adopted orange shirts in 1973, it was unclear whether the trim on the shirt was black or navy. Photographs at the time suggested black but Tony has found a match programme from 1973-74 that confirms once and for all that it was navy blue. The shirts had appeared in February 1973 as a new change kit at Newcastle United and these were indeed trimmed with black and white. The club crest appeared in the pre-season team photograph and in some early games as shown here before it was dropped.
Accrington Stanley (1982-84 added), Barnet (1983-84 sponsorship corrected), Forest Green Rovers (1983-84 added), Macclesfield Town (1982-83, 1983-84 added), Wycombe Wanderers (1982-83 sock trim added).
16 October - Historical Miscellany
For many years I had thought that when Clapton Orient changed their name to Leyton Orient in 1946 they adopted shirts with blue chevrons, a reference to an older style in the new club colours. This was informed by the photograph on the left taken before the 1947-48 season. Now our old friend Alick Milne has uncovered this report in the Nottingham Evening News (10 April 1945). Clapton Orient have obtained permission from the League to revert to their former colours of white shirts with red V's, which they wore in their Second Division days. For many years they have been wearing red and white hooped shirts. Orient players will appear in the new shirts as soon as they are procurable. This may be before the end of the season. This suggests that the shirts in the photograph, which are showing their age, are from 1945-46 and were retained for training.
(Photograph: Leyton Orient Images of Sport NN Kaufmann 2001.)
Alick has also supplied details of three missing Cove Rangers strips (1975-76, 1985-86, 1987-90).
Maidstone United (1962-63 added, 1970-72 crest added, 1985-86 sponsorship confirmed). On the right is the Stones' team from 1922-23.
15 October - 2019-20 Update
International: The strip worn by England last night in Bulgaria has been added.
League One: Coventry City (3rd), Accrington Stanley (3rd).
Tottenham Hotspur (1986-88 2nd colours adjusted), Leicester City (August 1965 added), Motherwell (1983-84 added and all graphics 1978-2013 have been reviewed to add missing detailing and correct main colour).
11 October - 2019-20 Update
Premier League: Wolverhampton Wanderers (European 2nd).
Championship: Birmingham City (3rd), Brentford (special).
League One: Lincoln City (3rd), Bolton Wanderers (1st).
4 October - Scottish Updates
As soon as I published this mystery photograph of the Scotland team, the HFK Elves rushed into action. It turns out to be the team due to play England at Hampden Park in February 1968. (Alan Gilzean, who is in the photograph, was replaced by John Hughes for the match itself.) The photo was taken a few days earlier at a training ground with the players kitted out in plain shirts just for the occasion. They may have been unused tops held over from 1966. My thanks to Alick Milne, John Reid and Greger Lindberg.
This image from the Aberdeen Press & Journal (22 10 38) is the first photographic corroboration I've seen of Falkirk wearing navy shirts with red sleeves and places this strip a season earlier than previously thought, which means a slight reshuffle of dates. In the process i had another look at this picture of Alexander Sharp who played for the Bairns between 1937 and 1938. As well as showing the unofficial town crest, there is an odd contrast at the collar and the socks are also visibly darker than the shirt. If we assume that our old friend, orthographic film stock was used, then we can resolve the colours as navy with red placquet and socks.
(Photographs: Aberdeen Press & Journal, Football Cartophilic Info Exchange.)
*Date to be confirmed
I have substantially revised the Brechin City section (1906-1905) with new material supplied by Alick Milne. On the right is a very rare team photograph from 1907-08 that helps resolve one outstanding issue. City's early colours were registered with the Scottish FA as "light blue" but, as we can see from the image, this is misleading. In fact "light blue" was often used in Scotland to distinguish sides that wore mid- or royal blue such as Rangers (and Brechin) from the far greater number of yeams that wore dark, navy blue, which was referred to simply as "blue."
(Photograph: Alex Wood Brechin City: the Early Years.)
1 October - International Update
1938 World Cup: Germany (collar revised).
1954 World Cup: Yugoslavia wore red socks against France.
1978 World Cup: Brazil (socks worn with blue change shirt corrected).
1991 Women's World Cup Group A: Norway (socks corrected and detailing amended). Kits now confirmed for Norway v Denmark match.
1991 Women's World Cup Group B: Brazil wore blue socks against Japan.
1995 Women's World Cup: Brazil (detailing and jacqaurd print corrected).
This photograph of the Scotland team was sent in by Bill Wilson and presents us with a bit of a problem. As far as I know the team only wore plain navy shirts without contrasting crew necks once in the 1960s, against Wales in 1966. However, the goalkeeper in this line-up is Ronnie Simpson who did not make his debut until the match with England in April 1967. In fact Bill has not been able to identify any match in which this group of players were selected. Help please.
(Photograph Norway 1991: FIFA.com)
30 September - 2019-20 Update
Premier League: Aston Villa (3rd updated), Wolverhampton Wanderers (special).
Championship: Millwall (3rd).
League One: Bristol Rovers (3rd).
League Two: Exeter City (3rd), Leyton Orient (3rd).
Scottish League One: Stranraer (3rd).
13 September - 2019-20 Update
Championship: Swansea City (3rd).
League One: Shrewsbury Town (3rd).
League Two: Scunthorpe United (3rd).
Immediately after the Second World War several clubs were unable to source playing kit in their traditional colours so played in unfamilar strips. A good example is Barnet, pictured here in 1945-46. They reverted to broad amber and black hoops, worn since 1928, the following season. This style was eventually dropped in 1958 and has yet to be revived.
I've reviewed Torquay United's strip 1986-2001 and made several colour corrections and detailing changes.
12 September - Historical Miscellany
Some odds and ends from my Pending Folder.
This is Aston Villa in 1956-57, the season they finally dropped the heavy woollen sweaters they had worn since the Victorian era.
As the first stage in the restructuring of the Welsh pyramid, the Welsh Premier League has been rebranded as the Cymru Premier and the 2019-20 section is now available.
Stoke - The Early Years
Following on from my recent review of Stoke City's kits 1968-83, I've received some fascinating material from Jonathon Russell. His research into newspaper reports between 1868 and 1872 casts doubt on the official version of the club's formation, provides additional information on the connection with Charterhouse School and raises some interesting questions about the link between Stoke Ramblers and Stoke FC which I have now explored on the club page.
The most intriguing find is this photograph of members of the 1872 Charterhouse football team wearing crimson and blue jerseys. It is thought that Stoke Ramblers wore the same colours when they were founded in 1868 by Henry Almond, an Old Carthusian who had played for the Charterhouse First XI in his final year at the public school, 1867-68. In the absence of any other evidence, I think this raises the possibility that Almond provided a set of old school tops for the club he founded before he went off to build railways in Costa Rica and Venezuela.