There have been quite a few interesting kit developments over the past week, so we’ve grouped them together here.
The over-riding theme, as you’ll read, is that things were a bit Irish (being Irish, we can say that, but you’re xenophobic if you’re not Irish and you say it).
Coincidentally, the best kit of the week featured a green shirt and white shorts, but it was used by Stoke City rather than Ireland. To honour the recently departed Gordon Banks, Stoke came up with an elegant tribute for their game against Aston Villa, with goalkeeper Jack Butland wearing a replica of the strip used by Banks as the Potters won the 1972 league cup:
In Northern Ireland, Coleraine hosted Glentoran in the Danske Bank Premiership. Both in home kits would have been fine:
However, Glentoran opted to bring their white away shirts, worn with the home shorts. Such a match-up wasn’t deemed acceptable:
The solution was for Coleraine to change, though as their away kit has white socks, they used the home set:
Andrew Gillan, who made us aware of this incident points out that Coleraine have worn their home kit against white shirts since the beginning of last season.
South of the not-yet-hard Irish border, on Monday night St Patrick’s Athletic hosted Finn Harps in the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division. These are the sides’ home kits:
However, Harps changed to their luminous yellow change kit (a colour which has been used at various occasions by the club over the past two decades) and referee Graham Kelly was wearing lime green.
While the difference between the two kits can be discerned here, under the Richmond Park floodlights, there was some confusion:
Thankfully, Kelly and his assistants changed to black for the second half.
The other incident of note came in rugby’s Six Nations Championship.
While France sell blue change kit shorts on their website, instead they wore the white set from their first kit when they entertained Scotland.
It’s the second home game in a row where France have had a socks-clash, with the game against Wales seeing both in white shorts and red socks. While there are no hard and fast rules against such issues in rugby, in 1994 Wales decided to switch to green socks against France and reaped the rewards.