International Classics – Denmark and Norway, 1988

It’s tough to follow a classic, as Hummel found with Denmark in 1988.

The strip the ‘Danish Dynamite’ side wore at the 1986 World Cup is held in very high regard, but it meant that it was difficult to come up with an improvement.

In our view, they made a valiant attempt with an unusual but pleasing design, featuring two hoops on the lower midriff, white trimmed in navy on the home shirt while the change option was a simple reversal.

Denmark premiered it in their disappointing Euro 88 campaign, with all-white worn as they lost against Spain for the third consecutive time at a major finals. All-red was used against Italy and may be familiar to Subbuteo fans of a certain vintage.

While the horizontal bands might suggest that the design wasn’t suitable for a club kit, Brondby also used that style but, apart from Denmark, the most notable wearers were Norway.

As noted by Joey Smith in the last Cold War Classic instalment, it wasn’t unknown for the two Scandinavian sides to share the same Hummel designs. However, earlier in the 1980s, Denmark had more navy than Norway on their kit, in contrast to the countries’ flags.

That discrepancy was redressed with this style, which they used more adventurously than their neighbours, with the gap between the stripes and the area below in a third colour.

This feature was very much emphasised on the long-sleeved shirt, as with the away strip used against Scotland at Hampden Park in 1989 – when, oddly, a different pair of white shorts were used, even though the navy-accented set would have worked just as well. Another difference was that the sleeve chevrons on Norway’s shirts were smaller than Denmark’s.

For the Euro 92 qualifiers, the two countries would still be with Hummel but would differ design-wise while Norway switched to adidas after that, with a mix of generations.

Since then, they have always had different kit manufacturers.

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