2009 March 31

The new England kit
Alan Green of 5Live called it ‘grotesque’.  Umbro, who produced it, call it a ‘technically specific capsule wardrobe’ – what would you call it?

The new England strip is deliberately supposed to remind us of the beautiful decade (1964-1974) of the beautiful game (Brian Clough coined the phrase) in England terms, in other words, when we won the World Cup.

So this kit is supposed to look both elegant and intimidating. It’s white, it’s mid-length in the shorts department, which is a bit odd, because by ’74 we were definitely into the era of the short-short, which was a pretty ugly fashion but there you go, designers have a certain amount of blindness to the faults of previous eras, thank God. And that top is definitely a polo shirt, not a round or even a V-neck but a properly collared dazzling white shirt. And as far as the England squad is concerned, it’s tailored. Oh yes, each of the lads was measured and fitted into a bespoke set of kit by a tailor.  The shirt sold to the general public will also be sold in chest sizes, like a formal shirt, not in small, medium and large, which are the normal kit sizes.

If we win through to the final this time, you can safely guess that white polo shirts will be the biggest selling item in casual clothing. So why not get your white polo bargain now? The key details here – if you want to emulate the football version -are to try and get it to look fitted, to ensure that the collar is soft and rolled rather than popped or sharply creased and to avoid front pockets.

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