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What’s the story- Contemporary, Origins or Heritage Celtic shirts?

If there is one area of business that Celtic are prolific in it is new kit launches.

The hoops may be famous across the world but that hasn’t restricted the creative minds at Adidas from putting out five first team kits this year alone, plus various goalkeeping options, training and leisurewear which all clearly have a big market.

At the start of September the club launched a limited edition kit which is basically basic with understated involvement from sponsors and kit manufacturers with green on green alongside white on white.

In the modern world it is as close as you are likely to get to the shirt worn in Lisbon, contrasting sharply with the black and blue of Inter Milan that still produces startling images almost 60 years later.

That day in the Portuguese capital set the tone for Celtic and Scottish/British football with the bold kit of green and white hoops, white shorts and socks making an impact across Europe and beyond.

Strangely there is a story to the boots, plain black Puma boots but an early Adidas deal resulted in Neilly Mochan preparing for the match by painting three white stripes onto the boots that made history.

Until the early nineties Celtic only changed their collar style, the club crest appeared in the late seventies alongwith the Umbro diamond but the kit barely altered with three or four year lifespans before the commercial interests really took over.

Nike, New Balance and Adidas have now been the kit manufacturer with varying results. Nike was well received, New Balance not so with the jury out on the much desired Adidas deal which is now into its fourth season without producing the outstanding design that supporters had sketched and photo-shopped over, concept kits became a passion.

What works in a design studio doesn’t always translate onto the pitch, 12 months ago Ange Postecoglou was very unhappy about the grey/silver kit worn against St Mirren in the only domestic defeat before the title was clinched, wearing hoops away to Hearts in May.

That third kit was avoided until the second St Mirren away match with the 2-0 defeat reversed into a 5-1 victory ahead of the Viaplay Cup Final.

In March there was a strange ‘heritage’ kit launch which sold impressively but was never worn in a match, not even in a friendly. With four kits stamped with 23/24 over the last few months it seems certain that the heritage kit will just feature in supporter collections.

With the origins kit Adidas have been about as traditional as possible for a Celtic kit, 120 years after the vertical stripes were converted to hoops with only Sporting Lisbon and Shamrock Rovers wearing similar kits in top flight football.

The contemporary home kit will no doubt sell in big volumes but will never win any popularity contest although it may well have been designed to provide the maximum possible contrast with the origins kit.

With the Adidas deal running until the end of next season there could be another change on the horizon but with kit being sold in vast volumes through the club, Adidas and JD it seems unlikely that the three stripes will be waving goodbye.

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1 Comment

  • by Redmond
    Posted September 11, 2023 6:08 pm 0Likes

    Heard rumours that the heritage top wasn’t given permission to be used in matches… for being too Irish. Not sure if that’s accurate at all??

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