A Roman oddity
- Thanks to Pete Doyle of the AS Roma Matchworn Twitter account for all of his help
We recently looked at the kits worn by Napoli in the 1990-91 season and the seeming lack of consistency as they wore two different home shirts.
Made by Ennerre, one was plain and one had a swirl-like design. Roma, whose kits were also produced by the Italian manufactuer, had a similar situation but with their change strip rather than their first-choice outfit.
Generally speaking, when required to switch from dark red, they opted for the all-white kit seen on the left.
It featured red and gold on the collar with red cuffs and it had the ‘NR’ logo appearing through the fabric.
Early-season games away to Genoa and Torino saw it used but, four days before that October 7 clash in Turin, a different shirt was worn when Roma travelled to Portugal to take on Benfica in the Uefa Cup.
Following the same design as the Napoli ‘alternative home’ and third shirts, it was mainly white but with the swooping pattern rendered in red and gold.
Given that it was worn in Lisbon, the easy assumption to make is that it was the European away kit, the same as the Napoli alternative was initially classed as a cup kit.
However, having got over Benfica and then Valencia, Roma were drawn against Bordeaux in the third round of the Uefa Cup and in France they wore the plainer white shirt. When forced to change in the Coppa Italia, the all-white kit was used, too.
To add to the confusion, that didn’t mean that the swirl shirt was retired – it appeared in away league games against Lecce, Bologna and Milan in the spring of 1991.
Two white kits would be more than enough, you’d think – and you’d be right, though there was another white prototype was produced but didn’t feature in a competitive game.
Let’s call a spade a shovel – it was a copy of the adidas West Germany/Cork City design, albeit reversed (as the 2018 Germany shirt was). However, the pattern had to be lower down the shirt to accommodate the sponsor. While Roma didn’t give their one game-time, Atalanta did wear the style for their change kit.
Good job!!! Btw…. first kit on the right was never used by first team… but only by the youth team (Primavera). 😉
— Lou Piccione (@loupiccione) December 1, 2019
Roma made it to the finals of both cup competitions, beating champions Sampdoria in the domestic decider but losing to Internazional in the Uefa Cup, while they finished in ninth place in Serie A. In the summer of 1991, they parted company with Ennerre, joining forces with adidas for the next three seasons.