March 1914 A
1955-1956 A (1)
1957-1958 A (1)
1957-1958 A (2)
April 1958 A (3)
1977 FA Cup Final
When, in 1896, Liverpool first adopted red and white as their first choice, they also bought a set of white woollen jerseys with black collar for use as a change kit.
In 1901 Liverpool FC adopted the Liver bird as their official emblem and won the first of their many League championships: their change colours at the time consisted of white woolen jerseys with a red yoke worn with their usual white knickers and red stockings.
Between 1911 and 1920 pre-season trial matches were played between "Reds" and "Stripes," implying that Liverpool's change shirts may have been striped. Contemporary newspaper reports indicate that Liverpool played in red and white stripes stripes against Arsenal in 1911, Middlesbrough in 1914 or 1915 and at Aston Villa in 1919. The Liverpool Echo (8 November 1913) describes "paralysed pink costumes" against Burnley, possibly a reference to the worn out, faded state of the shirts. When the teams met again at Turf Moor in March 1914 Liverpool turned out in black and white stripes (Burnley had changed into blue and white stripes anticipating Liverpool would play in their red tops and returned to the dressing room to change into their usual claret and blue - Burnley Express, 18-03-1914).
Around 1931 Liverpool adopted their familiar change kit consisting of white shirts with red trim and black shorts worn with the home stockings of the period.
On New Year's Day 1938 the team wore red and white hooped tops against Chelsea at Anfield. It appears they were trying out a new outfit ahead of an FA Cup tie with Crystal Palace. Their first choice shirts clashed and both teams were required to change in the FA Cup but Liverpool's white alternative tops were the same as Palace's so it seems the home team sourced a new set of shirts for the tie.
The club badge was not worn except in FA Cup finals until the mid 1950s. Modern continental style shirts were introduced in 1955-56 but the old shirts, with collars and long sleeves, continued to be used in cold weather until 1958.
The first variation on the white/black tradition came in 1979 when an all-yellow third kit was worn in the FA Cup semi-final against Manchester United at Maine Road. The outfit was rarely used but proved popular and in 1982 all-yellow with red trim became the team's official change strip.
Between 1977 and 1984, Liverpool won the European Cup four times. Although they wore their usual home kits in these matches, UEFA regulations at that time did not permit shirt sponsorship, so the 1981 shirts worn were without sponsors' logos and even the Umbro trademark was covered up with sticky tape. Commemorative crests were worn for each final.
Both white and yellow kits were used until 1987 when Adidas introduced a silver-grey strip which became the standard colour for their change kits for the next four seasons. Subtle grey trimmings also featured on the home strips of the period. In 1991 Adidas introduced yet another innovative outfit that broke with tradition with a bottle-green and white kit with bold white stripes, mirrored on the home kit. These attracted quite a lot of criticism from supporters who thought the three-stripe motif associated with the manufacturer was too dominant. Three more away kits featuring bottle-green were introduced before Reebok took over in 1996.
There was at the time a fashion for introducing unusual colours to away kits and Reebok followed suit with a shirt that became known as "ecru", a term that seemed more market friendly than "beige." In 1997 Liverpool returned to tradition with an all-yellow change kit followed by a white and black one in 1998. The club now adopted the practice of introducing one new kit on an annual rotating basis: so this season's away kit was used as a third kit the following season and one of the three kits was changed each year, providing supporters with a new product to spend their cash on each season. Cynical observers accuse clubs, who submitted to pressure to retain kits for two seasons, of using this rotation to exploit the market.
Over the next few seasons the new change kits owed little to tradition and were in completely different colour schemes each year although the 2003 and 2005 kits were re inventions of the classic white, black and red strip. Liverpool also followed the example of Manchester United and a number of leading European clubs by introducing special editions of their home kit for European competition.
In 2006 Adidas once again became Liverpool's kit partner and their designs over the next few seasons paid homage to the full range of traditional colour schemes associated with this great club.