Big changes for Newcastle and Sunderland – but key principles stay the same

The Newcastle United kit for the coming season is noticeably different, as it features white socks.

While they have featured occasionally as a first choice, generally they are used as alternative and they have not seen used as the primary set since the 1998-2000 strip, when Ruud Gullit tried to effect a change he had also brought about at PSV.


The socks do feature a Newcastle United wordmark in black on the back, but they look somewhat odd from the front with only white and gold visible. It’s not an oversight, though – the Toon never have the Puma logo in black.

Why? Because the puma is a member of the cat family and Newcastle’s rivals Sunderland are nicknamed The Black Cats.

Like Newcastle, Sunderland have a noticeable change for the coming season – and also a kit foible based on their rivals.

First off, the change: it’s looking likely that Sunderland will wear red shorts as first choice this season. The launch pictures showed the home shirt with both red and black shorts, but the black are also the set for the away shirt and, while both will be used with the home, images of new signings have featured the red.

Like Newcastle’s white socks, red shorts have been used as back-up in the past, but then they were superseded by white. However, more recently than that, they have opted to wear their away kit when shorts-clashes have occurred.

The black shorts have red adidas stripes, just as the club’s home shorts have had since they joined with the German firm in 2012, with the exception of 2016-17, when they were gold.

Logic would say that white stripes might be worth trying every once in a while, but of course that would be representative of the Newcastle strip and so, like the black Puma logo for the Toon, they are a no-no.

Oddly, though, it’s not a ban which extends to goalkeepers’ shirts.

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