The reveal of next year’s kit edged a step closer yesterday as the club tweeted an image of the collar.
Once upon a time, the kit launch was something that saw little build-up or speculation, but in recent years kits have become quite a key subject. Whether it was the ‘Kwik Save’ effect of the title-winning kit of 2019, or the return to a more basic red and white stripe, someone is always ready with a comment or two. Fashion is subjective and it is well-known you can’t please everyone with the home shirt.
Traditionalists prefer an equal red and white stripe across the kit, as they say we play in red and white and that is that. I firmly fall into that camp, with one of the nicer efforts of the past decade coming in the 2012/13 season, a year that brought awful football. I suppose a kit is only as good as the players who wear it though, with few people likely to say they liked the 2010/11 season’s effort.
The club are stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to design though; if it remains the same for too long then people may get bored, whilst if they try to innovate then people will kick back on change. Whatever the choices, the shirt the players wear is the least impactful decision of the season and yet will draw the same sort of controversy as a player signing.
So, what do we know about the new kit? Very little right now. It has a ‘V’ neck collar by the looks of things and one or two people have taken the hashtag ‘new stripes, same Imps’ to suggest a change of thickness on the stripes. The collar has drawn parallels with the 1995/96 season’s shirt, a year in which we had three managers, but also saw a future manager make a short loan move to us.
This is the kit being suggested by many on social media, a return to the retro effort the club wanted in 2018/19. In that instance, the shirt was very much a marmite effort, but there will be some who hope that something like this could finally achieve that fans feel is both retro and modern.
However, the collar has already drawn some comments, but it is hard to judge without seeing the full shirt. Personally, I prefer a ‘V’ neck on a football shirt and I strongly believe that last year’s collar was one of the weaker points of a half-decent shirt. It remains to be seen if the shirt lives up to the ever-increasing expectations of supporters, eager for something to digest, comment on and moan about on social media.
Some fans have hoped this title-winning shirt from 97/98 might be the basis for the new one. Personally, it isn’t for me; I’d prefer pinstripe to no stripe. Lincoln City should always be in red and white, and single stripes, quarters or the like simply don’t do it for me. Similarly, if the pinstripe is too thin, I’m not on board either. I liked the 84/86 retro shirt that was released recently, but I wouldn’t want a return to that style as our current kit.
Still, what do I know, right? I only saw the designs as part of the Supporter’s Board and voted on which design I preferred, but I haven’t actually seen the finished article…..