News & Updates Archive 2016
25 November - More Silliness
Paul Olsen has suggested this Cardiff City third kit from 1993-94 as an entry for our Silliest Strips feature. Worn when City lost at Bristol Rovers in January 1994, it was promptly consigned to the bin. Some time later, and before Ninian Park was demolished, an employee of the club discovered a battered replica that had been gathered up under a scheme thought up by Sam Hammam (then chairman) to offer a discount on new replicas to supporters who handed in their old shirts. Presumably this shirt amnesty was intended to ensure that items like this neveragain saw the light of day. Paul reports that even the family dog won't have it in his basket.
Here's another from Paul Clare - Canterbury City 1991. There's really not much to say about this accident with a spray gun.
More entries are welcome - the more obscure the club the better.
Gary Drew has submitted this photograph which, despite the poor quality, has helped me capture some extra detailing on Brentford's yoked jerseys, adopted in 1914. Typically the yoke extends across the top of the sleeves and the socks appear to be black with a gold/blue/gold band on the turnover. Note also that the change shirts, worn by some of the reserves, are reversed. The Bees wore blue and gold between 1903 and 1920, changing to white jerseys with navy knickers when they became founder members of Division Three in 1920. The familiar red and white stripes did not appear until 1925.
22 November - Silly Shorts
It's time to pick up on our occasional feature on silly strips and today I want to highlight a few more examples of striped shorts that have been sent in by Paul Clare. On the left is Cambridge United visiting Wycombe Wanderers in August 1994. They seem to be wearing beachwear because their normal black shorts would have clashed with those of the home team. Whereas the alternatives just clash.
Now please enjoy Banbury United playing Northampton Town in the FA Cup, November 1973. Mmmm - that's nice.
Finally Paul also uncovered this extraordinaryunpleasantness worn by Cork City when they met Galatasaray in 1993. Click on the image to view a clip of the shorts in action on YouTube.
Long term contributor Steve Flanagan has been digging through his collection and found that between 1903 and 1921 Everton's pre-season trial matches were between the "Blues and Stripes" which gives us a strong clue about their change shirts in this period. Furthermore, contemporary press reports mention that these alternative tops weresimilar to those of Newcastle United.
Greenock Morton (1991-93 shirt detailing added): the first St Johnstone "kit" was likely to have been cricket whites as the local cricket club started playing association football before St Johnstone FC was formally constituted.
Sunderland 1976-77 crest updated:
9 November - Vintage Ireland Top Update
Thanks to everyone who responded to yesterday's item. Thanks in particular to JCD whose excellent Northern Ireland Footballing Greats site includes a selection of team photographs that provide evidence that the Irish team did indeed wear shirts with collars between 1887 and 1914 and that the laced crew neck style was adopted after World War One.
Pictured is the 1920 side. Note the extravagant hooped jersey worn by the goalkeeper.
8 November - Vintage Ireland Top
This wonderful framed top has turned up and HFK has been asked to help put a date on it. It is made of wool and has "The Athletic Store Belfast" printed onto the neck label. St Patrick's blue is the colour worn by the Ireland team from 1882, when the FA of Ireland was formed, until 1931 when green shirts were adopted for the first time. The sparse photographic evidence that I have seen suggests the team wore shirts with wing collars up until 1914. When international football resumed in 1919 I believe that laced crew necks appeared but again, the photographic evidence is not conclusive. The top does, however, resemble those worn in 1930 (shown on the right).
If you can shed any light on the origin of this top please let me know.
1 November - 2016-17 Update
14 October - International Update
Scotland: Kit worn against Malta last month added.
England: The all-white strip worn in Brazil in May 1964 did not have cadet stripes on the sock turnover.
1986 World Cup: Soviet Union and Uruguay (2nd) shirt textures removed. Argentina wore two different change shirts on this tournament; the lighter version with shadow stripes appeared in the infamous "Hand of God" match with England. Note also the different crests on each top. (Thanks to our old friend André Conceição e Silva for these.)
Silly Kits Dept
This is Margate with the Kent Senior Cup in 1998 wearing shorts that are frankly an embarrassment. (Submitted by Jeremy Jacobs).
Contributions are welcome. The more obscure the team the better.
12 October - 2016-17 Update
If you thought the days of silly kits were behind us gaze in awe at the mighty Windsor FC's current outfit, worn here in the FA Vase match with Daventry earlier this season. (Submitted by Bill Craven.)
In 1877 Heart of Midlothian dyed their hooped jerseys maroon but, as you can see from the photograph, this was not entirely successful and the the darker navy bands showed through. If you look closely at the player sitting with his legs crossed, you will notice the stripe sewn into the side of his knickers. John Small has uncovered a report in The Scotsman (15 September 1878) that confirms this detail was scarlet (thus retained from their previous outfit).
The photograph on the right is from the Burnley Express 18 March 1914 when Liverpool were the visitors. Liverpool had worn what the Liverpool Echo described as "paralysed pink costumes" in the fixture at Anfield in November 1913 (presumably a reference to the washed out state of their red and white change shirts). For the return Burnley, as the home team, changed into blue and white stripes but discovered Liverpool had taken the field in black and white striped tops. The home team retreated to the dressing rooms and donned their usual claret and blue. (Found by Pavel Shalaev.) Curiously, when the teams met again at Crystal Palace in the FA Cup final a month later, both played in their regular first choice shirts (Source: Dundee Courier, April 27, 1914).
Blackpool (1990-91 detailing added).
22 September - Scottish Clubs 2005-06
Ian McConnel has provided information that allows me to improve the detailing on these graphics: Rangers (1st, 2nd, 3rd), St Mirren, Kilmarnock, Peterhead, Aberdeen, Falkirk, Heart of Midlothian, Livingston, Hibernian, Dunfermline Athletic, Inverness Caledonian Thistle.
21 September - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Manchester City (3rd).
League One: Millwall (2nd socks updated).
League Two: Doncaster Rovers (charity kit), Crawley Town (3rd).
Scottish Premiership: Heart of Midlothian (3rd).
NIFL Premiership: Glentoran (change).
Our old friend and avid colouriser of old football photographs, George Chilvers, has submitted this intriguing picture of Bradford (Park Avenue) from 1931-32. This is when the club dropped their traditional hooped tops in favour of unique amber shirts with red and black sides. George noticed that half of the squad are wearing shirts with black sleeves. It seems unlikely that these were change shirts as they were so similar to the versions with amber sleeves and I speculate that the suppliers provided two different versions. Perhaps one set was worn by the reserves. Incidentally the amber sleeves are black on the reverse.
The next photographic evidence we have comes from 1933-34 and while the basic design is the same, there are no black sleeve versions and the sleeves are amber on both sides.
Robert Dale has uncovered more on Wimbledon. The "W" shirts shown below were in fact worn in 1919-20: the white tops previously shown are now believed to have been a change strip. Furthermore, written records indicate that these tops were blue and red. HFK regular Tony Sealey has submitted photographs that have led me to change the 1982-83 graphic.
Barnet (2016-17 1st socks changed).
I am grateful to Robert Dale from The Historical Don who has contributed the recently published new material about Wimbledon FC. Bert has now found references to the team wearing black and white in 1912, when the club was re-formed after the demise of Wimbledon Borough. The photograph, (which was not taken on matchday which may explain the various knickers on display) shows the team wearing blue tops for the first time in 1920. The London FA did not approve of the large "W" on the chest and this was later dropped.
Carlisle United (1992-93, 1987-88 detailing amended.)
Thanks to the extensive collection of team photographs on coludaybyday.co.uk I've been able to update the timeline for Colchester United and add the missing 1988-89 kit. This is the team pictured in January 1946, one of many on the site.
We have more on the original Wimbledon FC, including a tantalising gimpse of their colours in 1911-12 when they played as Wimbledon Borough and new information on their colours 1919-23. The timeline has also been revised to fill in some of the remaining gaps.
I've smartened up the Leeds United crest history and added the missing 1998-99 version (thanks to Samuel Clark).
The NIFL 2016-17 Section is now open.
This is Wimbledon Old Centrals pictured in 1904-05 wearing what I assume are green and black shirts. According to The Historical Don these were the colours adopted in 1896. I have also revised the 1893-96 graphic to show their previous colours of light blue and chocolate and that for 1896-97.
26 August - 2016-17 Update
Queen's Park will wear a special strip tomorrow against Livingston based on their original colours as part of their preparations to celebrate their 150th anniversary next year. The navy and grey combination will be worn as first choice until the end of the 2017-18 seson.
19 August - 2016-17 Update
I've added the new season section for the Welsh Premier League. Highlights include a fine new bespoke kit for Aberystwyth Town and the debut of Cardiff Metropolitan University.
I should like to pay respect to FC Nice who wore this commemorative shirt in their opening Ligue 1 fixture on Sunday as a tribute to the 85 people who died in the attack on Bastille Day in the city. The names of the victims are printed into the front in a heart shape. Members of the crowd held up large cards with the number "85" printed on them in an act of solidarity.
Nice won the match against Rennes 1-0 who also wore shirts with the heart motif.
Liverpool's Blue Shirt
HFK's elves have been busy over the last five days uncovering the truth behind the blue Liverpool shirt featured in my last post. A popular theory was that the image had been photoshopped and William Kay went so far as to try to prove it with this image of a genuine (red) top which he manipulated to prove the point. The problem with this idea is that our contributor, Linda Connor, owns one. Furthermore she has discovered another in Dublin and a third was recently sold on eBay as "a very rare Liverpool football shirt."
John Lovett speculated that the top might have been worn by Liverpool's goalkeepers in cup games but I've found no evidence of this.
The second theory is that the shirt is a fake. Russel MacKenzie and Jon Jones compared a genuine top (right) with the one sold on eBay and noticed a couple of anomalies. Look closely and you will notice that the blue version has the Adidas Equipment neck tag (introduced 1991) rather than the trefoil label evident on the real thing. Furthermore, the trefoil on the right breast has two (®) registered trademark symbols rather than the regulation one.
This begs the question I posed five days ago,namely, why would anyone produce a fake Liverpool shirt in blue? Thomas Kenmuir, has the answer. Several years ago ...my wife and I were in Valletta, Malta, when I noticed a market stall selling hundreds of different football shirts. Upon closer inspection some of the shirts which looked to be genuine articles were in fact very good copies. I think I actually saw a shirt like the one shown displayed next to a blue and white CELTIC shirt and a blue and green MOTHERWELL shirt. When I pointed these out to the stall holder he said he knew nothing about football and all his stock was the genuine article and I had no right to question his integrity and honesty etc, etc. So rather than argue I let it go so perhaps that where that Liverpool shirt came from.
So there you have it. My thanks to everyone who contributed and my commiserations to the punter who paid £250 for a Maltese knock-off!
Let's start today off with a real oddity, sent in by Linda Connor. Clearly this is a Liverpool shirt from 1989-91. The quality is apparently good and as far as I can tell, the detailing and the textured print on the fabric is all accurate, which seems to rule out this being a fake. But why on earth would anyone produce a Liverpool shirt, whether fake, prototype or otherwise in blue? Had some designer at Adidas failed to do his research? Was this part of a secret conspiracy to merge Liverpool with Everton? Was there a terrible mistake in translating the order leading to the wrong dye being used at some factory in the far east? The people of Merseyside demand to know!
Derby County (2007 play-off final kit added): Sheffield Wednesday (1989-91 crest and logos corrected): Rotherham United (1988-89 kit now correctly dated): Rochdale (green piping added to Rochdale 1996-98 shirt): Manchester United (1976-77 European change kit had red socks, not blue as previously shown).
6 August - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Sunderland (2nd).
Championship: Preston North End (3rd), Fulham (2nd).
League Two: Hartlepool United (2nd), Stevenage (1st shorts & socks confirmed).
Scottish Premiership: Rangers (2nd, 3rd).
That's it for a few days as I'm taking a short break. Updates will resume next week.
4 August - Historical Update
I am grateful to Johnny Meynell, Halifax Town's official historian, who has provide a lot of information that has filled in most of the gaps in my records. In among his material are a couple of surprises. For example, The Shaymen started outwearing black and white stripes as worn here by the first ever team in September 1911. It was not until competitive football resumed after the First World War that they adopted blue and white. Another surprise was that between 1924 and 1930 the team wore unique blue shirts with gold shoulders By coincidence, as I was browsing the interweb looking for additional material, I bumped into this trading card from the 1920s, which corroborates Johnny's information.
3 August - Historical Material
This is the first ever Huddersfield Town team that joined the North Eastern League in September 1908, known as The Scarlet Runners. HFK Research Associate Roger Pashby has confirmed that the team wore white shirts pre-season but switched to red when league competition started. The photograph comes from Roger's Huddersfield Town Collection.
Ross County (the time line for 1990s kits has been revised): Halifax Town (1911-16, 1919-21 added, 1985-86, 1986-87 corrected): Hereford United (1985-86, 1987-88 detailing amended): Carlisle United (1987-88 alternative sponsor added):
2 August - Scottish Update
Scottish Premiership: Celtic (3rd), St Johnstone (2nd), Kilmarnock (2nd), Dundee (3rd).
Scottish Championship: St Mirren (2nd).
Scottish League One: Livingston (2nd).
Scottish League Two: Clyde (2nd kit sponsor added), Cowdenbeath (2nd).
Former Members: East Stirlingshire.
1 August Update
Premier League: Arsenal (2nd, 3rd), Liverpool (3rd), West Ham United (3rd), Manchester United (3rd).
Championship: Huddersfield Town (3rd), Blackburn Rovers (2nd), Brentford (3rd).
League One: Fleetwood Town (1st*).
League Two: Grimsby Town (2nd).
29 July Update
Premier League: Chelsea (3rd).
Championship: Burton Albion (1st, 2nd), Brentford (1st, 2nd), Reading (1st, 2nd), Nottingham Forest (2nd), Leeds United (1st).
League One: Rochdale (3rd*), Bristol Rovers (1st, 2nd), Shrewsbury Town (1st*, 2nd), Bury (1st, 2nd).
League Two: Cambridge United (2nd), Newport County (1st, 2nd).
28 July Update
Premier League: Manchester City (2nd).
League One: Bolton Wanderers (1st), Northampton Town (1st), Southend United (1st, 2nd), Charlton Athletic (3rd).
League Two: Cheltenham Town (1st, 2nd), Blackpool (1st).
27 July Update
Premier League: Manchester United (1st), Hull City (1st), West Ham United (1st).
Championship: Brighton & Hove Albion (1st).
League Two: Portsmouth (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Notts County (1st, 2nd).
26 July - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: AFC Bournemouth (3rd), Southampton (detailing of shorts/socks confirmed), Burnley (2nd).
Championship: Fulham (1st), Brighton & Hove Albion (2nd), Preston North End (1st socks updated).
League One: Sheffield United (2nd), Charlton Athletic (1st), Scunthorpe United (1st, 2nd).
League Two: Morecambe (1st shorts corrected), Grimsby Town (2nd), Doncaster Rovers (1st, 2nd), Colchester United (3rd), Crewe Alexandra (2nd).
22 July - More 2016-17 Club Kits
Championship: Huddersfield Town (2nd), Norwich City (2nd, 3rd), Sheffield Wednesday (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
League Two: Colchester United (1st, 2nd).
21 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Everton (2nd), Hull City (2nd).
Championship: Newcastle United (2nd, 3rd).
League One: Oldham Athletic (1st, 2nd, 3rd*).
20 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Chelsea (2nd).
Championship: Nottingham Forest (1st socks corrected), Wigan Athletic (2nd, 3rd), Preston North End (1st, 2nd).
League One: Peterborough United (1st), Coventry City (2nd).
League Two: Leyton Orient (1st socks confirmed), Yeovil Town (1st, 2nd*).
19 July - 2016-17 Updates
Scottish Premiership: Hamilton Academical (2nd), Celtic (2nd), St Johnstone (1st), Rangers (1st).
Scottish Championship: Greenock Morton (1st socks and other detailing confirmed), St Mirren (1st socks confirmed).
Scottish League One: Alloa Athletic (1st, 2nd*), Brechin City (1st, 2nd*), Peterhead (1st*, 2nd*), Queen's Park (1st*, 2nd*), Stenhousemuir (1st*, 2nd*).
Scottish League Two: Stirling Albion (1st, 2nd*), Arbroath (2nd), Berwick Rangers (1st*, 2nd*), Clyde (1st, 2nd), Elgin City (1st*, 2nd*).
With all first kits confirmed and just a handful of change kits to be released, that's it for the Scottish section for the time being.
17 July - 2016-17 Updates
Scottish Premiership: Heart of Midlothian (2nd), Hamilton Academical (1st), Motherwell (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
Scottish Championship: Dumbarton (1st, 2nd).
Scottish League One: Stranraer (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Livingston (1st).
Scottish League Two: Annan Athletic (1st*, 2nd*), Montrose (1st*, 2nd*), Forfar Athletic (1st, 2nd*).
15 July - 2016-17 Updates
I'm going to focus on Scottish clubs today.
Scottish Premiership: Partick Thistle (1st, 2nd), Inverness Caledonian Thistle (1st, 2nd), Ross County (1st, 2nd).
Scottish Championship: Raith Rovers (1st*), 2nd), Hibernian (1st, 2nd), St Mirren (1st).
Scottish League One: Albion Rovers (1st*, 2nd, 3rd*).
Scottish League Two: Edinburgh City (1st, 2nd).
I have been considering whether I was correct to set up a new section for Edinburgh City following their promotion to the SPFL and have come to the conclusion that they are in fact a continuation of the club founded in 1928. The critical point is that although the club stopped fielding a team in 1955, Edinburgh City Football Club Ltd continued to exist and ran a social club. In 1986 Postal United FC were incorporated into the limited company and became the football section. There is, therefore, clear continuity between the original and modern club so I have merged the files.
The image on the left is a fragment of a rare team photograph from 1938 when for a short period the team included the club colours of Leander Pink, Oxford and Cambridge Blue in their playing strip. The monogram badge in these colours can be clearly seen.
14 July - 2016-17 Updates
Championship: Birmingham City (2nd colour corrected).
League One: Gillingham (1st, 2nd, 3rd socks confirmed).
League Two: Wycombe Wanderers (1st, 2nd), Carlisle United (1st, 2nd).
13 July - 2016-17 Updates
We're loving this here at HFK Towers! It's the new Ethiopia shirt and a fine example of something that is so far in the direction of bad it comes out on the other side and is good. My thanks to Neil Morris, our man in Adis Ababa for sharing.
Premier League: Watford (1st, 2nd), Totteham Hotspur (1st, 2nd 3rd), Leicester City (3rd sock detailing added).
Championship: Birmingham City (2nd).
League One: Gillingham (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
League Two: Mansfield Town (1st*, 2nd shorts/socks confirmed), Accrington Stanley (1st, 2nd).
Former members: Tranmere Rovers.
12 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Southampton (1st, 2nd).
Championship: Barnsley (1st kit colour corrected), Blackburn Rovers (1st).
League One: AFC Wimbledon (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Walsall (1st, 2nd), Oxford United (1st, 2nd).
League Two: Luton Town (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Mansfield Town (2nd), Hartlepool United (1st), Stevenage (1st, 2nd), Plymouth Argyle (shirt sponsor added).
10 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Manchester City (1st), Leicester City (3rd).
Championship: Queens Park Rangers (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Newcastle United (1st), Leeds United (1st, 3rd).
League Two: Morecambe (1st, 2nd).
9 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: West Bromwich Albion (2nd).
Championship: Huddersfield Town (1st), Barnsley (2nd), Brighton & Hove Albion (3rd*), Aston Villa (1st, 2nd), Norwich City (1st).
League Two: Leyton Orient (1st, 2nd).
Former members: York City (1st).
Well. we're back. Honestly, I leave the country for two weeks and look at the mess I find! Has anyone not resigned (apart from Jeremy Corbyn obviously)? Unfortunately I was flying back from Poland when Wales played Portugal so missed the match but despite the defeat, everyone here is immensely proud of our boys.
I'll focus on bringing the Euro 2016 section up to date first and then turn to all the new club kits that have been released over the last fortnight.
Premier League: Burnley (1st), AFC Bournemouth (2nd).
Championship: Wolverhampton Wanderers (2nd).
League One: Milton Keynes Dons (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
21 June - Euro 2016 Update
Last night's superb demolition of Russia by Wales provides a suitable point for me to sign off for a two-week break.
Both Group B games have been added.
20 June - Euro 2016 Update
Due to what I can only describe as a major administrative error, the next two weeks of Euro 2016 coincide with my hols. Inexplicably, UEFA did not reply to my emails requesting that they change the dates of the tournament so I'm afraid there will be no more updates after tomorrow until I return in a fortnight's time. At that stage we'll just have to see if the UK is still in Europe in every sense.
Last night's Group A games have been added.
League One: Millwall (1st), Swindon Town (1st shorts confirmed).
League Two: Exeter City (1st, 2nd, 3rd*).
Scottish Championship: Dunfermline Athletic (1st, 2nd).
Former members: Lincoln City.
I've restored the link to the Fanfoot51 site which contains a history French club and national team kits and replaced the old text links with banners.
18 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday's matches have been added.
17 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday afternoon we allowed our team of undocumented, underage interns out of the cellar where they are confined to enjoy the daylight while yours truly retired to the pub handily situated next door to HFK Towers here in the Welsh Valleys to watch the Wales v England match along with the rest of the village. It has to be said that Gareth Bale's free kick was met with a, shall we say enthusiastic response. However, after Sturridge pinched the late winner the mood was a little different. I had no idea so many words in the Welsh language start with an "F" and end with "kin".
Yesterday's matches have been added.
Premier League: Liverpool (2nd).
League One: Swindon Town (1st).
Scottish Premiership: Heart of Midlothian (1st).
This rather poor quality photograph is of Port Vale in 1912-13. I had interpreted this as showing claret and light blue tops, which would have been consistent with their previous colours. However, I've now had confirmation that the shirts are in fact black and amber. Embarrasingly, the club seem to have taken my previous version as the model for their new third kit. Still, the new shirts do look good.
I've revised the Swindon Town graphics 1904 to 1935. I now believe the variations apparent in contemporary photographs are the result of fading and inconsistancies in film stock.
16 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday's matches have been added.
15 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday's Group F matches have been added.
Scottish Premiership: Aberdeen (2nd).
Historical Football Kits is featured in a new article on the British Ideas Corporation website.
13 June - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Sunderland (3rd shorts & socks confirmed).
Championship: Derby County (1st), Fulham (2nd*), Rotherham United (3rd).
Scottish League One: East Fife (1st, 2nd*).
I've updated the Euro section, adding competitition patches and tweaking some details now that we can see the final production versions of strips in action. The ever-popular match-by-match sections are now open also.
Please don't send me kit details for the tournament unless you spot a mistake. I am monitoring all the matches and will update the site regularly.
9 June - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Sunderland (3rd), West Ham United (2nd).
Championship: Leeds United (2nd).
8 June - 2016-17 Update
League One: Sheffield United (1st), Northampton Town (2nd).
7 June - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: AFC Bournemouth (trim on 1st kit corrected).
League Two: Crawley Town (1st, 2nd).
More Victorian Discoveries
Andy Boocock has discovered details of Wrexham's first proper uniform strip which was introduced in October 1873. Brian Webb has found evidence that Middlesbrough briefly wore navy jerseys for the first part of the 1890-91 season before reverting to white in January 1891. This proves the "blue" tops previously dated 1892-95 were in fact navy and worn rather earlier.
I've reassessed my 1905-06 Brentford graphic. This is based on the rather poor quality photograph shown here (courtesy of Brentford FC Memorabilia) which suggests the usual blue shirts with thin gold stripes were reversed for this season. However, given what we now know about the orthographic film stock of the period that was insensitive to blue light but oversensitive to yellow, I no longer believe this to be the case.
We now know that Burton Albion's distinctive crest goes back to the club's formation in 1950-51.
3 June - A Correction
I got my visitors figures muddled in the last entry. HFK receives over 1.5m visits a year, that's a monthly average in excess of 100,000.
Premier League: AFC Bournemouth (1st), Swansea City (1st, 2nd).
Championship: Cardiff City (2nd), Birmingham City (1st).
League One: Coventry City (1st).
League Two: Cambridge United (1st).
Scottish Premiership: Kilmarnock (1st).
Scottish Championship: Greenock Morton (1st kit - the fans have spoken!).
1 June - Ten Years of Historical Kits
This month HFK celebrates its tenth anniversary. Back in the middle ages, when we launched, our graphics looked like this and when the site was featured in the national press, we had so many visitors that our server crashed.
From the beginning we encouraged visitors to get involved and contribute their own research and within days, the first emails started to roll in. We did not forsee that HFK would end up curating thousands of contributions from hundreds of visitors (our email archive alone fills 1.4GB) many of them the product of painstaking research and now published on HFK for the first time.
In those early days we monitored the number of visitors each month and got excited when the numbers reached four figures. Today we average over 100,000 visitors every month.
I want to take this opportunity to say thank you to all our supporters and contributors. HFK would not be the same without you.
31 May - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Manchester United (2nd), Middlesbrough (2nd kit colours adjusted.
Championship: Rotherham United (2nd kit corrected).
League One: Fleetwood Town (2nd), Millwall (2nd).
Scottish Championship: Queen of the South (shirt sponsor added).
Scottish League Two: Cowdenbeath (1st).
30 May - 2016-17 Galleries Open
To tidy up the menu on the right hand side of this page, all the previous Premier/Football League season galleries from 1888-89 to 2015-16 can now be accessed via the Previous Seasons link.
28 May - 2016-17 First Kits
27 May - 2016-17 First Kits
Coming next week - the 2016-17 season galleries for the English Premier/ Football Leagues and Scottish Professional Football League.
The brand new Edinburgh City page has been expanded with a dozen new graphics.
25 May 2016 - More Victoriana
Brian Webb has been trawling through more 19th century press cuttings and found definitive evidence of when the short-lived Middlesbrough Ironopolis switched from their original green and maroon tops to cherry and white. He has, in the process, resolved a long standing puzzle about the tops worn in this, the only surviving photograph of the team, taken when they won the Northern League and before they made their ill-fated application to join the Football League. We now know that they adopted striped shirts in January 1891, changing to cherry red tops with a white sash in February the following year.
Brian has also established that Sunderland Albion usually played in dark blue (changing to white when shirts clashed with opponents). Just like the Nops, Albion broke away from their parent club in a dispute over payments. They existed for four seasons before they went bust.
Ian Newell has sent in confirmation of Plymouth Argyle's strip from 1898-99.
23 May 2016 - 2015-16 Update
Saturday's FA Cup final kits have been added.
Portsmouth (shorts detailing corrected): Crewe Alexandra (2nd strip trim ammended): Mansfield Town (socks updated): Brentford (3rd added): Bolton Wanderers (charity strip added): Burnley (charity strip added). My thanks to David King for these.
20 May - 2016-17 First Kits
Celtic added. Supporters of Greenock Morton are so incensed by the decision to drop their team's beloved hoops that the club have postponed the planned launch and may withdraw the controversial new strip - full story here.
Euro 2016: Belgium 2nd socks corrected. Germany 2nd shorts detailing corrected.
World Cup 1986: Poland's change strip did not have the elaborate shadow stripes seen on their first choice shirt.
Brian Webb has been scouring press cuttings from the 1890s and has passed on a few gems. Cheltenham Town adopted ruby red shirts for the first time in August 1896. We can also now confirm that Derby County were wearing their unique blue, chocolate and amber shirts in December 1886, a year earlier than previously thought. Richard Collinson has found evidence that Middlesbrough adopted white shirts with blue trimmings and the borough arms in 1886.
19 May - Home International Section
I've been through the Home International pages and removed all the redundant "Buy From" links and added a large number of fresh ones that lead to currently available shirts for England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Most of these are of limited availability so do get cracking if you want to snap one up. The entrance hall has also been spruced up.
17 May - 2016-17 First Kits
The 2016-17 season galleries will be posted as soon as the last promotion play-offs are concluded later this month.
15 May - 2016-17 First Kits
9 May - 2016-17 First Kits
I found this image on the onevalefan website, a very useful photographic archive of Port Vale's kits down the years. The point of interest is the Staffordshire knot crest incorporating the club's initials. This is the earliest evidence I have seen of Vale wearing a badge.
This is a photograph of Clydebank wearing their distinctive sash shirts in 1970-71. This shows that they wore red socks rather than the white ones I had previously shown. Incidentally the current Clydebank FC, which plays at junior level, wear a very similar strip.
While we are on the subject, I came across this photograph of the original Clydebank FC from 1920-21. Formed in 1914, the club played in the Scottish League until 1931 when they resigned and went out of business, a victim of the recession that hit the Clyde shipyards in the late 1920s.
Lee Gauntlett has found a cutting in the Manchester Athletic News from March 1882 that describes Scotland wearing red and white "stripes" (almost certainly hoops) against Wales at Hampden Park. This suggests that the blue and white jerseys (which I believe were provided by Edinburgh Academicals RFC) already recorded were only worn against England earlier in March.
Barry Gayton has been in touch with a family story that suggests a link between Blackburn Rovers and the fledgling Norwich City which explains why the Citizens (as Norwich were known at the time) started out wearing tops that were identical to those of the Lancashire side.
Huddersfield Town's charity strip has been added.
7 May - 2016-17 First Kits
Norwich City charity strip added.
29 April - 2016-17 First Kits
Tottenham Hotspur charity kit.
12 April - 2015-16 Update
On the left is an interesting photograph of West Bromwich Albion taken in 1882 when they briefly wore red and white jerseys. I've taken this opportunity to refresh Albion's crest history.
On the right is James Iremonger (1876-1956) an all-rounder who played for Nottinghamshire Cricket Club and Nottingham Forest at the turn of the 19th century. Iremonger made three appearances at full back for England in 1901-02. For copyright reasons I am not able to publish a photograph that appears to show him wearing a dark England shirt (although you can view it here on the Getty Images website.) I had speculated that this may have been worn when England played a German XI in September 1901 but several photographs have come to light that show England wore their regular strip while the Germans were in quartered shirts. Iremonger won full caps against Scotland and Ireland but there was no reason for England to change their shirts in these games. I have now concluded that he removed the FA crest from his international shirt and had it sewn onto his club top before posing for a portrait to celebrate his international debut.
Next we have an image of Josh Johnson (1884-?) who made 276 appearances for Crystal Palace between 1907 and 1919. This is the first photographic evidence I have seen for the unique shirts worn by Palace in 1912-13. (Photograph courtesy of the Gottfried Fuchs Blogspot.)
From the same website comes this very early advertisement for Football Kit, dating from 1876 which boasts that the advertiser has the colours of every club in Scotland in stock. There were probably fewer than 50 association football clubs in Scotland at the time and more than half of these wore plain navy jerseys, so the claim is not as impressive as it initially sounds.
Queen of the South (1996-97, 1997-98 corrected).
1958 World Cup: Scotland wore all-red socks in their Group Two match against Yugoslavia to avoid a colour clash. New evidence indicates that Paraguay wore black shorts rather than blue (see left) in this tournament.
Following on from the major overhaul of this section (17 January) I have made a few final tweaks to five graphics 1986-2002.
22 March - Euro 2016 Update
Nike's new "Vapor" design for England's Euro 2016 kits has not met with general approval. In fact the most positive comment in HFK's inbox describes them as "odd:" most correspondents were considerably more scathing. In HFK's opinion, these strips are a disgrace, placing the Nike brand above the traditions of the England team and the FA. For more insight have a look at David Squires' amusing piece in The Guardian.
Also added today, Poland (1st, 2nd), Croatia (1st, 2nd), Portugal (1st, 2nd), Turkey (1st, 2nd), France (1st, 2nd). These are all variants on the Vapor design. The USA and Brazil are also to wear this template, a sad reflection on Nike's growing impact on the game.
Sheffield Wednesday have announced that their original badge, designed in 1956, is to be revived next season and will feature regularly on the teams' shirts for the first time.
Here are two interesting early snippets recently found by regular contributors. Paul Nagel has found a contemporary reference to Newton Heath LYR (Manchester United) wearing "white with blue cord" in 1879. White tops were quite common at the time, being cheap and widely available: coloured caps, socks and/or strips of coloured fabric were worn to distinguish one team from another. This is the first time I have seen a reference to "cord."
Lee Gauntlett has found a press cutting from 1911 that describes Crewe Alexandra's first colours as "blue and white." Although the arrangement is not recorded I think it likely that this refers to the one-inch hooped jerseys that were widely available at the time. Knickers were rarely described as players provided their own in whatever colour they had to hand.
The MLS 2016 section is now complete.
Euro 2016: The new kits for Ireland and Iceland have been added.
MLS: DC United's new crest added.
Stoke City: New third strip added.
George Chilvers and his Facebook chums have spotted that the shirts worn by Leeds United in the early 1950s had oversized shoulders, as can be seen on this team photograph from 1953-54.
The famous sketch on the right shows Blackburn Rovers playing Old Etonians in the 1882 FA Cup final. Because of a colour clash, Rovers had to buy a set of hooped jerseys for the match. Brian Webb has found a report in the Athletic News (29 March 1882) that confirms these were blue and white. Although the sketch doesn't show it very well, the public school old boys played in their regular "harlequin" (ie quartered) tops of Eton blue and white.
The 2016 MLS section is now open.
The Euro 2016 has been updated with the latest releases (Slovakia 2nd, Switzerland 2nd, Czech Republic 2nd, Austria 2nd, Hungary 1st & 2nd, Ukraine 2nd). I've also added a note about the petition raised by Iceland's supporters about the names that will be worn on the back of their players' shirts in June. (Icelanders generally don't have surnames so fans want forenames instead.)
Stranraer's crest history has been added. This completes a project that was started in 2011!
I've added the all-green kit worn by the Republic of Ireland in Paris in 1976.
The detailing on Exeter City's current third kit have been updated.
I now have confirmation that when Fulham adopted black and white striped shirts in 1889 they were worn with navy knickers. On the left is the team photographed around 1894.
4 February - International Updates
Euro 2016: Albania's kits added.
Euro 1980: Belgium wore pinstriped shirts against Italy rather than in the final. Netherlands' collar altered. (Thanks to Franc Forjan.)
Euro 1984: The Adidas trim on the Yugoslavia and Portugal strips has been corrected. (Thanks again to Franc Forjan.)
Euro 1992: Netherlands shirt detailing modified.
World Cup 1994: The detailing on Brazil's change shirts has been made more apparent.
Republic of Ireland: Cuffs on the 1969 strip worn against Hungary have been altered and the strip worn in the 1970 return match added thanks to Giampaolo Tardivo. Barry Rojack has supplied new details on the shirts worn in 2001 against Estonia.
Two undated and rather grainy photographs of the Highland League side Inverness Thistle have come to light. The one on the left is from around 1950 and shows the team wearing a thistle crest. the second image (right) I have provisionally dated as being from 1968-69. If you can corroborate dates for either please get in touch. In 1994 Thistle merged with their local rivals Caledonian to form Inverness Caledonian Thistle and were elected to the Scottish Football League. The third Inverness team, Clachnacuddin were going to be part of the merger but could not agree terms and opted out.
Thanks to Simeon Ayton I have been able to draw more accurate versions of the Cambridge United "book and ball" crest worn in the mid 70s.
17 January - The Mariners Updated
I've spent the last four days working my way through an enormous file of photographs and detailed notes sent to me by Grimsby Town supporter and collector, Dave Wherry. Thanks to Dave, the Mariners' page has been substantially updated with many missing kits added, corrections made and several mid-season changes now recorded. Grimsby's early kit history is fascinating. Featured on the left, for example is the 1910-11 squad wearing chocolate and light blue jumpers: these were replaced by the now familiar black and white striped shirts at the start of the season. On the right is the 1905-06 squad wearing deep salmon pink tops.
12 January - Historical Miscellany
Halifax Town (1970-71 - see left, 1971-72 corrected).
I've updated the Chester City crest history.
With help from Tony Sealey and the minute books that can now be searched on The Everton Collection, I have reviewed the history of Everton's change kits between 1952 and 1964. The minutes, for example, record that the team wore old gold and black in an FA Cup tie against Ipswich Town in January 1953 and this strip made several more appearances over the next seven seasons. They also tell us that all white was adopted as a change kit in 1958-59. This is seen here during a pitch invasion at Stamford Bridge when supporters seem less than pleased with the new look. (Photograph courtesy of corbychelsea.com)
The computer glitch that affected HFK last month has finally been resolved and we are back in business. Thank you for your patience and special thanks to everyone who has submitted new historical material, which I will now start to publish.
Mark Andrews and Andy Kelly continue to delve into primary source material and shed light onto the early history of Arsenal. Their latest coup is a cutting from the London Evening News dated 17 December 1892 which confirms that the puzzling striped shirts (worn here by Caesar Jenkins) were blue and white. These appear to have been worn just once in a home game against Nottingham Forest because a week later, against Burslem Port Vale (who wore red at this time) they turned out in white tops. Read the full story on The Arsenal History.
In the course of his research into the colours of South American national teams between 1910 and 1967, Esteban Catalán has finally found the corroboration needed to confirm the colours of Romania's shirts in the 1930 World Cup. In its coverage of the tournament, Chilean magazine Los Sports describes the Romanian team wearing red "uniformes" with yellow collars against Peru.
Brian Webb has completed his research into the early history of the Plaiters (as they were known at the time) and made some fresh discoveries about their colours during this period. Read the full story on Brian's website, The Straw Plaiters.
Variant kits worn against Scotland (1974), Yugoslavia (1976) and Scotland (1977) added, change strip 1958-1962 updated.
Paul Nagel has established that the Reds' change strips between 1910 and 1922 were blue and white.