The Imps kit for the 2021/22 season was released this week, and it is fair to say it has gone down well.
It’s no secret I love a football shirt, I’ve been collecting Imps’ shirts since the 86/87 season and have ‘far too many’ according to my partner. Well, she’s going to be upset when she realises another is making its way into the house over the coming months.
The new season is going to be a bit different, as it will come without a sponsor and over the course of the campaign, five different companies will have their logo on the front. Personally, I’m undecided about how that will affect the aesthetic and feel of the kit – a sponsor is integral to a shirt in my opinion and to have five might mean the shirt’s overall impact gets lost. However, I wonder if this might also be a reflection of the current climate, in that the club have more scope to deal with partners if the outlay is smaller. Companies are only just getting back on track after 2020’s huge impact and I imagine that affects their promotional spend.
The absence of the sponsor makes the shirt more impressive at first glance though. Many connoisseurs of the football shirt prefer one without a sponsor and the fact this effort harks back to the last time we didn’t have one, the early eighties, makes it even more effective I think. It’s a great bit of marketing from the club by the way, dropping a shirt modelled on the last team to come close to the second tier right now and even more so without a sponsor on the base product. Personally, I won’t be adding a sponsor to mine and I strongly suspect others will feel the same, unless someone incredibly cool comes along and drops their name on it, as Ed Sheeran has with Ipswich, or Jake Bugg did at Notts County. I can’t see that happening though!
Until we have the shirt in our hands, it is hard to say whether it is decent or not, but the overall design has gone down well. As I’m sure you know, I am on the Supporters Board and for the last couple of years, we have been lucky enough to get a preview of the shirts and vote on the ones we prefer. Last season, the vote was split equally and that left the choice further up the chain than us – I didn’t vote for the current kit but it has grown on me. This season, things were a bit different and the board split with a handful of us joining a separate committee with club officials and representatives, as well as The Kitsman from Twitter, to discuss ideas and the like. From the off, I was firmly behind red and white stripes and I think the collective input has arrived at a great shirt. I’m not just saying that because I was involved either, but the club wanted a shirt that was marketable and would appeal to a wide demographic of supporters, but also be different from previous seasons. My partner might say ‘but it’s red and white again’, but it’s red and white stripes which feels different to the last few years. That makes me happy, especially after the bar was raised last season.
It seems as though many of you agree too, and so to round off this quick article (which I forgot to do earlier and was meant to come after my Wembley bit), I’ll leave you with some of the feedback from Twitter.
Before you read the feedback, you can order here.
The best. A recycled classic.
— 🔴⚪🔴⚪ (@mr_jonnyd) May 28, 2021
This is the best imps kit I’ve seen. Well done!!
— Ben Franklin (@BFranklin1979) May 28, 2021
One of the best one in years, love it
Simple, classic, retro, perfect
— Charlotte Garton 🍎 (@Bongelette) May 28, 2021
It’s a thing of beauty
— Jason Robinson (@jasonr2765) May 28, 2021
The best strip we've had in years, traditionally I always have the away shirt but might have to reconsider uti
— Gary Brookes 🏴 (@gazbrookeslfc) May 28, 2021
Absolutely nailed it!
— sincilbanker (@sincilbanker1) May 28, 2021
— Willy Connie 🚾 (@Sgtbstard) May 28, 2021