The new series of This Is England ’90 started on television last week and caused a number of us in The Idle Man office to come over all nostalgic for that those times. Conversation duly turned to 90s football and all the joys that came with watching The Beautiful Game during the early days of the Premier League. One aspect that we couldn’t agree on was 90s football kits; were they objects of consummate beauty or tawdry items best left in the loft with the Power Rangers videos? The Idle Man has collaborated with Beyond The Last Man to create a list of our favourite 90s kits.
Every Englishman’s favourite World Cup (apart from 1966!) had a national kit to be proud of too. The combination of the sharp collar with the classic, yet subtle pattern down the front of the shirt works well stylistically and makes it one of this decade’s favourites as a result.
The national flag detailing on the collar and the sleeves contribute to this being one of Italy most distinctive kits. It was simple, elegant and of course came in that classic, retro Italian blue with the new emblem embossed throughout the material. The national team shirt rarely got better than this.
After the protracted and arduous war to secede from the Yugoslav federation, Croatia was understandably excited to demonstrate its newly found national pride at the 1998 World Cup. It may have been the first tournament as an independent nation on this biggest of stages, but that didn’t inhibit Croatia from illuminating France with its impressive football and that seminal and highly distinctive red and white chequered shirt.
To round off what was a fine year for kits, France hosted and won the 1998 World Cup wearing a design that we just can’t get enough of, even to this day. A brilliant horizontal stripe design made this now iconic kit stand out from the crowd back in the days when Les Bleus conquered the football world.