The modern-day football shirt is a bit like marmite – you either love it, or you hate it.
This season’s offerings are no different, with manufacturers opting for the bold and the brash when it comes to shirt design. These designs are often inspired by retro kits of the past, with kit makers choosing to rejuvenate classic patterns and colourways from shirts of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Shirts that still sit proudly on the shelves of vintage shirt collectors.
Because it’s these bold, outlandish and eye-catching designs that give OG shirts their longevity. You don’t remember the bland and uninteresting football kit, you remember the daring, the garish and the brave.
All of this begs the question, which of today’s football shirts have the potential to be future classics? Which modern football shirts are going to be front and centre of vintage shirt collections in 20 years’ time? Let’s take a look.
Arsenal 2021/22 Third Shirt
Arsenal’s latest third shirt from adidas is a huge throwback to classic designs of the 1990’s, when the likes of Ian Wright, Paul Merson and Dennis Bergkamp were the heroes of the North Bank.
Specifically, it takes cues from the two legendary ‘Blue Lightning’ away kits that Nike produced in 1994 and 1995, with similar lightning bolt patterning throughout giving it that old-school, vintage-inspired vibe.
Comin’ in a Mystery Blue colourway, with turquoise graphics and red trim that elevate that OG aesthetic, this shirt is made from Primegreen recycled materials and features AEROREADY sweat-wicking technology to keep you dry and comfortable at all times.
Does this Arsenal shirt have what it takes to stand the test of time? With its fresh take on designs from the ‘90s, this shirt should age like a fine wine and will be an ever-present in football shirt collections in decades to come, we’re sure of it.
Get ahead of the game and grab yourself a future classic football shirt here.
Tottenham Hotspur 2021/22 Away/Third Shirts
As mentioned earlier, it’s the stand-out, quirky and eccentric shirt designs that tend to age well. In that case, Tottenham Hotspur’s latest away shirt for the 2021/22 season is one to keep an eye on.
Unlike anything they’ve ever released before, or anything any team has worn before, Nike’s latest offering for the North London side may be an instant classic, purely because of how unique and unconventional it is.
The shirt is Black with Venom Green branding, but it’s the large, tie-dye design that makes this shirt pop. A pattern rarely seen on football shirts, it has the potential to be remembered for decades.
Similarly, Spurs’ 2021/22 third shirt is future classic material. Takin’ inspo from the N17 district of London, the home of Tottenham Hotspur, the shirt features a vibrant, lively design that celebrates all things N17, while the chevron patterning brings a subtle retro vibe.
The shirt is mainly in a Wild Berry colourway with Black trim and White branding. Both shirts feature Nike Dri-FIT technology and are cut from 100% recycled polyester.
Another outlandish and eye-catching design from Nike that will live long in the memory. Cop yours now, these could be future classics!
Inter Milan 2021/22 Third Shirt
Nike’s latest for the blue and black half of Milan is a throwback to a late ‘80s, early ‘90s classic. Pullin’ inspo from the archives, the new Inter 2021/22 third shirt is reminiscent of the 1989-1991 away shirt, but in a bolder colourway.
It features a similar spread collar, only this time with buttons that allow for customisable ventilation. But it’s the colourway that really sets this modern version apart from other shirts out there today. The base this time is black as opposed to white and instead of black and blue stripes, Nike have opted for Total Orange, Green Strike, Chlorine Blue and Lemon Venom that give this shirt a vibrant, almost fluorescent edge.
The colours are to represent Internazionale’s founding values of equality and inclusion.
Bringin’ a modern twist to an old-school fave, this shirt is one for the collection, so make sure you’ve got yours secure right here.
Manchester United 2021/22 Away Shirt
Once again takin’ inspiration from the gold mine that is the 1990s, Manchester United’s 21/22 away shirt is a contemporary spin on a fan favourite from the past.
Takin’ cues from the iconic 1990-92 away shirt worn by legendary United players like Ryan Giggs, Mark Hughes and Bryan Robson, the latest adi away offering boasts a similar geometric print in the same colourway as the OG strip from the early ‘90s.
Now worn by Stretford End heroes like Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Cristiano Ronaldo, today’s version features similar red branding, along with that iconic Blue and Cloud White colour scheme.
Cut from Primegreen recycled materials and built with AEROREADY sweat-wicking technology, this could be a retro shirt collection must-have in the next few decades! Stay ahead by securin’ yours here!
Chelsea 2021/22 Third Shirt
Chelsea’s third shirt for the 2021/22 season from Nike is, like both Spurs tops, a unique design rarely seen on a football shirt. This unconventional aesthetic is what sets this shirt apart from the rest, which is why we have it tipped to be iconic in the future.
It comes in a dark Blustery colourway with an all-over pattern that looks like paintbrush strokes, while the contrasting Hyper Crimson elements really bring the shirt to life.
It was designed with the help of young Chelsea fans who work in the fashion industry and their influence is telling, with the shirt giving off a youthful vibe that nods to London street fashion of the modern day.
All of these elements combined just may secure this shirt in history and make it a retro classic at some point down the line. Bag yours now, you may just be copping yourself a future icon.
Into old-school football shirts? Make sure you check out our retro shirt collection and for all things football this season, make sure you’re locked into @jdfootball.