New dawn for Roma

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Roma’s 2020-21 set of kits will certainly have a tough act to live up to, as we recently charted (link on right). Their 2019-20 offerings had a near-perfect mix of a classy home, brave away and kind-of traditional but still different third, while they also ticked the interchangeability box.

In trying to follow on from such a high, they’ve certainly got off on the right foot, we feel, but then we have a predilection for horizontal bars on strips.

It’s different to anything they’ve had in recent times but, while it’s a fresh look, it’s not 100 percent original as it leans heavily on a memorable kit from the past, albeit one worn for just a season and a half.

The club actually wore yellow/orange shirts at home in the first half of the 1978-79 season, but midway through the campaign, red returned, albeit with a good dollop of white and complemented by horizontal bars. These shirts were manufactured by Pouchain, a firm only just in business.

That shirt, and a white away in the same style, were worn during 1979-80, but come the following season they were back in all-red with yellow/orange trim. Nevertheless, the stripy shirt remains popular and retro versions are prominent at the club’s official stores in the city.

In our view, the approach for 2020-21 is a good one in that the shirt is clearly showing its influences without simply being a mindless copy – similar to what Arsenal did for their away strip on their return to adidas a year ago.

The original has been referred to elsewhere as ‘the ice-lolly shirt’ and it’s easy to see why, but we might suggest ‘tequila sunrise’ as an alternative moniker, the same as that given to the uniforms premiered by baseball team the Houston Astros in 1975.

We’ve no information as to the design cues Pouchain had more than four decades ago, but we do wonder if the Astros’ outfits played a part.

Whether or which, Roma have done well in paying tribute to a classic while also looking to the future.

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