Great one-offs – Everton, 1985

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Yellow change strips became popular in the late 1960s and 1970s primarily because they limited the chances of a third kit being needed.

A red or a blue team with a white second shirt will often need another option due to the large numbers of red/white or blue/white teams, but Arsenal were able to go from 1968 to 1994 with yellow away kits (excluding 1982-83) and only needed an alternative on three occasions, twice at the tangerine-clad Blackpool and once at Luton Town, then as now wearing an orange home.

Likewise, Everton were fairly safe when they opted for amber or yellow as the back-up to blue, but in 1985-86 they were drawn away to Shrewsbury Town in the Milk Cup.

This was the season in which the Toffees had the infamous ‘yoke’ home kit, while the change kit was yellow and neither was suitable at Gay Meadow, with home side wearing amber shirts with blue sleeves and blue shorts.

So it was that Howard Kendall’s side ran out in a shirt which was a white version of the yellow jersey, but with the ad hoc nature evident by the fact that it had no fabric pattern, unlike the home or the away.

The fact that the shirts had the smaller version of the NEC logo, despite the fact that the game wasn’t televised – there was a broadcast ‘blackout’ in the first half of this season – would seem to indicate that one set had been produced as a catch-all.

In the event, this 4-1 win was the only outing and it proved to be the last new Le Coq Sportif shirt worn by Everton before they switched back to Umbro for the following season, 1986-87.

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