I only wear my white shorts once

I suppose I should fear Rich’s wrath in posting this (this may be my last post; in which case hasta luego!), but I want play devil’s advocate regarding the shorts.

Perhaps it’s just how I was raised, in an American sporting landscape where sports teams are treated no different than a McDonalds, but the changing of uniforms is quite common. Granted there are certain pillars with established teams, most notably color: Cowboys are white. Red Wings are red. Celtics are green. Yankees are white and navy pinstripes. These, and many others, are the same teams that could never relocate for fear of fan rioting.

The same goes for footy: Liverpool and United will always be red, Chelsea blue, Madrid white, Celtic green, Brazil yellow, St Pauli poop brown, etc.

Other, less established teams feel they have to change their designs (or “rebrand”) every 5-10 years to rekindle interest and make a quick buck or two. And they’re a business, so they have every right to do so. Some rebranding works impeccably. Others are a disaster.

Look at Oregon University’s football team. Or the majority of MLS clubs. Research the USMNT in the past 15+ years alone. (USSoccer, and Nike, can’t even stick with a single color. Are we red with a blue sash? White with red horizontal pinstrips? Denim?!?) Granted, these are all located in the USA, but that is the prism by which I view other teams even if in other nations. Change is often a constant.

But the teams that have oodles of history and fandom (even if in America or England) are unable to make any design changes: even shorts. Although we may argue otherwise, we really don’t have any comparable history or crazy fan base. And thus we don’t have the luxury of demanding white/black/white every year until FFC ceases to exist. I firmly believe that several of the established clubs, if given the opportunity, would change a few things about their kits to make some extra money.

I’m not saying that’s a good or bad thing, but just the reality of the situation. Why?

Because kits currently exist to do one thing: make money. The days of when they served some higher purpose (be it local, ethnic, national, etc ties) are long gone and will never return. If FIFA allowed sponsorships on national team kits, the last bastion of non-capitalistic kitdom, (sans manufacturer logo,) you best believe it would happen. It’s just a sad reality we all need to face and accept.

And lastly, isn’t our name the “Whites”? So, wouldn’t an all-white kit make more sense than the traditional white/black/white? I dunno. I’m okay with the white shorts, mainly because our home kit is still predominately (i.e. the top is) white. If we suddenly went all-black, I’d have an issue.

Anywho, bring on the Faroese, amirite?

8 thoughts on “I only wear my white shorts once

  1. I can’t agree, even though I’m an American Fulham supporter. One of the things I’ve always valued as a Fulham supporter is the history, the sense of continuity, the sense that this is the same team that played West Ham in the FA Cup final, playing on the same ground (mostly) since the turn of the previous century. Although I’m not superstitious about anything but football, I think changing the shorts is just inviting trouble. First the Michael Jackson statue, now this….

  2. They wanted an all black away kit – to do so they had to sacrifice the black home shorts. They’ve redesigned the home shorts so there is still a fair presence of black. One way to make sure that they revert to white and black at home next season is to make sure no-one buys the black kit.

    1. Ha! For all the hyperbole, you’ve nailed it – of course it’s a practical change for the sake of an all black away kit.

      Panic over, next season it’ll be red away and black/white at home.

  3. It’s hard to get too worked up about the integrity of the kit when it’s covered with advertising. It’s not a complaint, mind you. I understand why they’re there, but they seem to make this a moot argument. “I don’t cheer for Fulham anymore, now that they’ve taken the ‘Pipex’ off their kits.” “This landfill has really ugly shrubberies.”

  4. just back in and they’re actually pretty good. I think Jamie had the opposite view – that they look worse in the flesh – but I was initially impressed.

    Why do it though? Will we really sell more white shorts? If we’re goign to toughen up and be the new Leeds or something then I’m all for it, otherwise it just seems like needless commercialism.

  5. See Rich’s point, see Timmy’s point. It looks good, if you forget about the history, but the history matters. How much will all this matter if the whites finish the season well? My biggest complaint, like Ron’s and I’m sure most, is the godawful ad should be shrunk and lowered. Wearing a jersey you feel you’re an FxPro fan not FFC.

  6. I don’t really get the McDonald’s comment for a few reasons.

    1) McDonald’s hasn’t changed colors or look for decades — red and yellow, Big Mac, fries, thanks much.

    2) If American teams are commercialized and lacking commitment to heritage rather than the tradition of European football clubs (which I take as the implication from the McDonald’s line), then why is it that the European clubs in pretty much all sports (as well as everywhere else in the world besides America, it seems) sell the jersey to a sponsor that changes every couple of years?

  7. If you look back at our kits there’s never been any radical change from basic design. Kit manufacturer’s don’t have a great deal of leeway in what they can do to make their new version sell. In fact now we’re seeing a new kit every year it must be harder to come up with anything new. I don’t think this is some long-term change (which I really wouldn’t be pleased about) just this year’s attempt to do something a bit different.

    I like it. I think the FoxPro logo (whilst still too big & too high) looks better on this than it did on last years. In 12 months time we’ll be wearing something different anyway.

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