Manchester United launched their new home shirt today under the slogan 'Break Expectations'.
The Old Trafford club struck an eye-watering £75 million a year deal with Adidas to be their offical kit supplier for the next ten years. This is the biggest kit deal in the history of the game, which dwarves both Real Madrid (£34 million per year) and Barcelona (£28 million per year) combined. This is the first time in twenty four years that Adidas have supplied a shirt for United, after a thirteen year deal with Nike ended last season.
The shirt contains a V-neck collar, white ringed sleeves, and as with most Adidas designs there are three stripes running across the shoulders. The new shirt also includes a graphic design on the hem taken from the Adidas kit worn by Ryan Giggs on his debut season with the club (1990/91).
Front of the new United shirt featuring a white V-neck collar and white hemmed sleeves (Manchester United FC)
Back of the new United shirt showing a hemmed graphic last seen on the 1990/91 home shirt (Manchester United FC)
United stars feature in 300 style promotional video (Adidas via Youtube)
The new shirt is certainly retro in its design, as it features elements of prior Adidas shirts last seen during the 1980's even before a fresh-faced Ryan Giggs would emerge to terrify opposition right-backs. The club crest is embroidered, which is a welcome addition to the 'sticker' badges so often used today (to save on manufacturing costs).
The simplicity of the kit is a big plus as it looks clean and tailored in its design. Almost classical. However, the hemmed graphic does spoil this as it doesn't really appear to belong to the shirt, and certainly appears to be a marketing 'gimmick'.
Former United Captain Bryan Robson in the 1983 Adidas home shirt (Manchester United FC)
Is this a good solid shirt? Yes. Will United fans be happy? Most likely.
Will it break expectations? Perhaps not. My score = 8/10