The Compulsory New Kit Review

With another season upon us, Puma have given us three more shirts. I feel like musician Danny Elfman said it best in his Oingo Boingo song, “Grey Matter”: “You’ll swallow anything that they shove down your throat.” This is possibly true of all football kits, as there is an immediate attachment to the club, the colors, and your heroes who will be wearing them, so it doesn’t really matter if the kits are good or bad, fans will buy them. And that is certainly what Puma are counting on here.

Just do a search for fashion from 1969, it's not a great starting point

As a preface, I’m aware that you people as a collective have little to no fashion sense, I’ve seen you at the stadiums and on social media. It's just a fact. As for me, I am coming from a background and a degree in fashion design, and I actually do care what the kits look like. In addition to pleasing aesthetics and good overall design, I look for practical things such as construction and comfort. Because not only do I want to look good repping my team anywhere from the grocery store to the stadium, I want to do it comfortably. But most importantly, I want my players to be comfortable, and I don’t want design to distract from or get in the way of great football.

We've seen it in action, what a way to cheapen even the best performances

The First Kit
The club initially launched this kit as the “Legacy of 1969.” While I don’t mind flashing back 50 years for inspiration, fashion was absolutely terrible in 1969 and it was not a good place for them to go. The thin stripes are a choice. Most people love them or hate them, but in spite of having them attached to certain wins in the past, they do not scream “football.” The actual colors of red and black are cheap and tacky. There is a tiny, insignificant Diavolo logo at the center back of the neck that is like an afterthought, it would only be noticeable up close and in person. The one redeeming factor in this kit is that it is simple, with a crew neck, but Puma have to screw even that up with poor fit and construction. Look at the way the crew neck sags around the players’ necks when they wear it. Even if you could consider it good design, Puma’s poor execution ruins it all.

This is the best we've got, and it's not great

The Away Kit
By far the best of the three, possibly just for the v-neck alone, it’s still not great. While the nod to the Italian flag at the center back neck is fabulous, that’s about it. There are wide stripes on the shoulder, one red, one black, that are screened on, floating, and do nothing/go nowhere. Other than to provide a place for two more Puma logos, of course. The colors of the stripes are wrong and look tacky, while the dolman sleeves (just go with it, it’s fashion speak,) are wasted because of the giant floating swatches of the wrong colors of red and black. Oh yeah, this was the kit I liked most. But hey, one good thing about all of these kits is the font for the players’ names and numbers on the back. At least we’ve finally returned to a respectable font.

Exploding with... well it's exploding, anyway

The Third Kit
I believe I said it on a recent podcast, but if I wanted to pay $100 for a polyester t-shirt with a tacky design, I’d buy the third kit. It’s as if red fireworks exploded on the black background, but only on the front panel, of course. While it also boasts the Italian flag motif at the center back of the neck, which is very nice, that might be the only redeeming thing about it. That, and the fact that it’s otherwise an all-black, crew neck 100% polyester t-shirt. With some fireworks for good measure. Again, the Puma fit ruins all. Although at least there are black shorts for the players to potentially wear with this one. Heaven knows that with Puma’s poor fit and particularly sheer white shorts, we’ve gotten to know a little too much about our players this past year. Except Puma even screwed up all of the shorts, they’re just a little too long, and have a tiny stripe of color at the bottom of each leg, one color for each leg. (insert facepalm here)

Of women, bullfighting, and Borini... the bolero training kit

Training Kits
A special shoutout to the training kits. While typically hideous, Puma have gone for a specific level of hideousness this year, by ruining perfectly good, solid jerseys with an awful print only in the shape of a bolero jacket. A bolero jacket is a women’s short, open jacket, usually used with formal wear. While it was inspired by a bullfighter’s uniform, it is more reminiscent of a clown costume when our players train in it. The players wear the red version, which is all kinds of wrong, given that the red printed “bolero” part of the kit looks like it doesn’t match the solid red of the rest of the kit. The goalkeepers get to wear the black version, while the staff wear the white. Please don’t buy this and wear this. Unless you are a legit bullfighter, because it would ward off even the most angry of bulls, if they don’t just outright laugh at you.

At least the font is good

All of the kits have been marketed with the phrase “The Roar of Milan.” When they say “roar,” I picture a sad, scrawny, homeless kitten who has been through a few street fights and barely survived. Certainly not what our ferocious players deserve to be dressed in. Poor design made so much worse by cheap fabrics, colors, and prints as well as atrocious cut and fit, it’s really a shame our players have to wear these things. But you have a choice. You can go online and find actual good designs of the past from Adidas, or wear other t-shirts or Milan merchandise that will not make you the laughing stock of wherever you are at. The team are already playing better than these abominable kits, so I don’t worry as much about them. Just sad that we still have a contract with Puma and will be subject to their poor design and fit for however much longer that lasts.

This post inspired by the music of Oingo Boingo’s “Grey Matter”

Our next match is a friendly
FC Feronikeli vs. AC Milan
Saturday, August 10 • 20:45pm CEST (2:45pm EDT)
This is Milan’s first match ever to be played in Kosovo

The Compulsory New Kit Review The Compulsory New Kit Review Reviewed by Elaine on 3:55 AM Rating: 5
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