I have to admit that even I find my reaction to this kit…strange.
On the one hand, it’s everything that I ask for: It’s simple, straight-forward, the red socks are back for the first time since 2013 (the 2014-2015 home socks were decidedly maroon), they’ve retained the retro-inspired crest, and the shirt has a retro-looking faux-jacquard pattern on it*, all things that I like!
I like it, I just don’t love it, and I think I know why. It is so “standard” that I have a hard time believing that any Scotland supporter is going to have a hard time attaching any kind of memory to it. It’ll be even more difficult as Scotland will be on to a new home kit before Scotland have a chance to win…anything. Scotland are out of the next World Cup and the qualification draw for EURO 2020 won’t even be held until December of 2018.
It’s not as though Scotland have a long history (or any history in recent memory) of success to associate with specific kits, but there have been moments worthy of remembering and there have been some iconic kits over the year. Mention James McFadden and the first thing I think of is “that” goal against France and the white and sky blue Scotland kit he did it in. Show me the 1994-1996 tartan kit and I immediately think of Gary McAllister, Colin Hendry, etc.. If I see the once-worn “cherry red” third kit from 2008-2009 and I’ll think of the debacle in Georgia that caused it to never be worn again. This kit? I know, because I’m a kit nerd, that it harkens back to the kits worn in the 1970s and 1980s, but beyond that? Meh.
It also doesn’t help my attitude that the “suggested retail price” put on the top by the Scottish FA is £60, or $80 at the current exchange rate. I know that’s the going price for a national team top in many countries, but c’mon. The SFA should be selling this top at about half that price just to thank those Scotland supporters who haven’t abandoned a side that hasn’t qualified for a major tournament in three decades. But no, the continue to gouge, gouge, gouge.
So, my review…mixed.
There is good news, however! The new goalkeeper kit- or at least the top- is really nice! Take a look:
I’m going to hope this kit has grey shorts with yellow stripes and white/yellow socks that mirror gradient stripes on the top. If so, it gets a “thumbs up” from me. I’m sure it’s just the latest Adidas goalkeeper template and that we’ll see it everywhere as Adidas-contracted nations release new kits, but for now it looks both different and handsome to me.
Thoughts on these new kits? Lemme know in the comments!
*there’s a video in the Scottish Football Association Twitter feed that shows this- it doesn’t seem to show up in any still photos.