Color me…”pleasantly surprised.”
I’m going to call this new kit (the shorts are red with white stripes, the socks white with red stripes) “simple” (in the best possible way) and “classic” (it reminds me of Feyenoord’s iconic top) with some…problematic details. But let’s deal with the positives first.
First, the club has made the shirt as simple as possible. There are no contrasting side panels, there is no piping, there is nothing to take the eye away from the shirt’s major design feature- the red/white split front. They haven’t even made the left sleeve red, which many clubs do (like Feyenoord). As with recent secondary kits, the colonial/revolutionary era New England flag is just below the back of the collar.
Second, as I mentioned above, the shorts and socks are as “basic” as the Adidas look gets- solid red with three white stripes for the shorts, solid white with three red stripes around the cuff for the socks. Other than the club logo and squad numbers on the shorts there is nothing to take the attention away from the shirt.
Third, the sponsor’s (United Health Care) image has been massively improved. This was done by removing bizarre corporate logo that preceded the company wordmark and changing the font of the wordmark. So, while “UHC/UnitedHealthCare” now takes up a larger area on the shirt, the thinner font and wider spacing create a much less cluttered/busy look, allowing more of the shirt’s template to show through.
Finally, and not that this is likely, but this is the kind of top that could be paired with solid white, navy, or red shorts and solid white, navy, or red socks to create a very different overall look, almost a “tertiary” kit if the Revs somehow found themselves in a non-MLS competition at some point in the future.
Okay, now two minor negatives.
First, despite the fact that this is probably the best the dated club logo has looked on a kit in years- it is still dated and needs to be replaced. The white background/stripes of the flag help it to sort of “fade” into the top, but it is still the weak link in the kit.
Second, and-flag related, I’m sure that the American flag “jock tag” on the shirt’s hem is league mandated for U.S. based clubs, but given the Revolution’s name, colors, and logo it just seems like overkill. They might as well play in Uncle Sam top hats with live bald eagles sitting on them. WE GET IT!!
Still, when all is said and done, this is a kit that is at least as good as the most recent secondary kit and one that is worth of the Revolution’s (finally) classy first choice kit. I don’t know if I’ll buy one, but I’ll be tempted!