It’s an issue Nike are familiar with when it comes to Barcelona, though as far back as their first season in Catalonia, 1998-99, they went with a halved design to mark the club’s centenary.
Halves have been revisited while 2015-16 saw them go with hoops, but both of those looks could still be said to be stripes of a kind. You’d struggle make that case with their 2019-20 home kit:
Bonus points to anyone who spotted that we put number 4 on the shorts in honour of Croatian midfielder Ivan Rakitić, but the reason Nike’s marketing department came up with was that it was to reference the Eixample region of Barcelona.
We don’t mind kit evolution but this seems a step too far, even if it just about identifiable as a Barça kit. Gerard Piqué certainly pretended to be happy:
The kit is something new and exciting. It might be different, but it is 100 percent Barça and it is even better that the design represents the bond the club has with the supporters and the people who are driving the city forward.
Interesting, Piqué doesn’t have a total aversion to a white Barcelona change shirt, something not seen in four decades. The word was that Barça vetoed Nike plans for that, but if the chequered pattern gains acceptance, then surely all bets are off. It could be a slippery slope.