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26 August - 2016-17 Update
Queen's Park will wear a special strip tomorrow against Livingston based on their original colours as part of their preparations to celebrate their 150th anniversary next year. The navy and grey combination will be worn as first choice until the end of the 2017-18 seson.
19 August - 2016-17 Update
I've added the new season section for the Welsh Premier League. Highlights include a fine new bespoke kit for Aberystwyth Town and the debut of Cardiff Metropolitan University.
I should like to pay respect to FC Nice who wore this commemorative shirt in their opening Ligue 1 fixture on Sunday as a tribute to the 85 people who died in the attack on Bastille Day in the city. The names of the victims are printed into the front in a heart shape. Members of the crowd held up large cards with the number "85" printed on them in an act of solidarity.
Nice won the match against Rennes 1-0 who also wore shirts with the heart motif.
Liverpool's Blue Shirt
HFK's elves have been busy over the last five days uncovering the truth behind the blue Liverpool shirt featured in my last post. A popular theory was that the image had been photoshopped and William Kay went so far as to try to prove it with this image of a genuine (red) top which he manipulated to prove the point. The problem with this idea is that our contributor, Linda Connor, owns one. Furthermore she has discovered another in Dublin and a third was recently sold on eBay as "a very rare Liverpool football shirt."
John Lovett speculated that the top might have been worn by Liverpool's goalkeepers in cup games but I've found no evidence of this.
The second theory is that the shirt is a fake. Russel MacKenzie and Jon Jones compared a genuine top (right) with the one sold on eBay and noticed a couple of anomalies. Look closely and you will notice that the blue version has the Adidas Equipment neck tag (introduced 1991) rather than the trefoil label evident on the real thing. Furthermore, the trefoil on the right breast has two (®) registered trademark symbols rather than the regulation one.
This begs the question I posed five days ago,namely, why would anyone produce a fake Liverpool shirt in blue? Thomas Kenmuir, has the answer. Several years ago ...my wife and I were in Valletta, Malta, when I noticed a market stall selling hundreds of different football shirts. Upon closer inspection some of the shirts which looked to be genuine articles were in fact very good copies. I think I actually saw a shirt like the one shown displayed next to a blue and white CELTIC shirt and a blue and green MOTHERWELL shirt. When I pointed these out to the stall holder he said he knew nothing about football and all his stock was the genuine article and I had no right to question his integrity and honesty etc, etc. So rather than argue I let it go so perhaps that where that Liverpool shirt came from.
So there you have it. My thanks to everyone who contributed and my commiserations to the punter who paid £250 for a Maltese knock-off!
Let's start today off with a real oddity, sent in by Linda Connor. Clearly this is a Liverpool shirt from 1989-91. The quality is apparently good and as far as I can tell, the detailing and the textured print on the fabric is all accurate, which seems to rule out this being a fake. But why on earth would anyone produce a Liverpool shirt, whether fake, prototype or otherwise in blue? Had some designer at Adidas failed to do his research? Was this part of a secret conspiracy to merge Liverpool with Everton? Was there a terrible mistake in translating the order leading to the wrong dye being used at some factory in the far east? The people of Merseyside demand to know!
Derby County (2007 play-off final kit added): Sheffield Wednesday (1989-91 crest and logos corrected): Rotherham United (1988-89 kit now correctly dated): Rochdale (green piping added to Rochdale 1996-98 shirt): Manchester United (1976-77 European change kit had red socks, not blue as previously shown).
6 August - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Sunderland (2nd).
Championship: Preston North End (3rd), Fulham (2nd).
League Two: Hartlepool United (2nd), Stevenage (1st shorts & socks confirmed).
Scottish Premiership: Rangers (2nd, 3rd).
That's it for a few days as I'm taking a short break. Updates will resume next week.
4 August - Historical Update
I am grateful to Johnny Meynell, Halifax Town's official historian, who has provide a lot of information that has filled in most of the gaps in my records. In among his material are a couple of surprises. For example, The Shaymen started outwearing black and white stripes as worn here by the first ever team in September 1911. It was not until competitive football resumed after the First World War that they adopted blue and white. Another surprise was that between 1924 and 1930 the team wore unique blue shirts with gold shoulders By coincidence, as I was browsing the interweb looking for additional material, I bumped into this trading card from the 1920s, which corroborates Johnny's information.
3 August - Historical Material
This is the first ever Huddersfield Town team that joined the North Eastern League in September 1908, known as The Scarlet Runners. HFK Research Associate Roger Pashby has confirmed that the team wore white shirts pre-season but switched to red when league competition started. The photograph comes from Roger's Huddersfield Town Collection.
Ross County (the time line for 1990s kits has been revised): Halifax Town (1911-16, 1919-21 added, 1985-86, 1986-87 corrected): Hereford United (1985-86, 1987-88 detailing amended): Carlisle United (1987-88 alternative sponsor added):
2 August - Scottish Update
Scottish Premiership: Celtic (3rd), St Johnstone (2nd), Kilmarnock (2nd), Dundee (3rd).
Scottish Championship: St Mirren (2nd).
Scottish League One: Livingston (2nd).
Scottish League Two: Clyde (2nd kit sponsor added), Cowdenbeath (2nd).
Former Members: East Stirlingshire.
1 August Update
Premier League: Arsenal (2nd, 3rd), Liverpool (3rd), West Ham United (3rd), Manchester United (3rd).
Championship: Huddersfield Town (3rd), Blackburn Rovers (2nd), Brentford (3rd).
League One: Fleetwood Town (1st*).
League Two: Grimsby Town (2nd).
29 July Update
Premier League: Chelsea (3rd).
Championship: Burton Albion (1st, 2nd), Brentford (1st, 2nd), Reading (1st, 2nd), Nottingham Forest (2nd), Leeds United (1st).
League One: Rochdale (3rd*), Bristol Rovers (1st, 2nd), Shrewsbury Town (1st*, 2nd), Bury (1st, 2nd).
League Two: Cambridge United (2nd), Newport County (1st, 2nd).
28 July Update
Premier League: Manchester City (2nd).
League One: Bolton Wanderers (1st), Northampton Town (1st), Southend United (1st, 2nd), Charlton Athletic (3rd).
League Two: Cheltenham Town (1st, 2nd), Blackpool (1st).
27 July Update
Premier League: Manchester United (1st), Hull City (1st), West Ham United (1st).
Championship: Brighton & Hove Albion (1st).
League Two: Portsmouth (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Notts County (1st, 2nd).
26 July - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: AFC Bournemouth (3rd), Southampton (detailing of shorts/socks confirmed), Burnley (2nd).
Championship: Fulham (1st), Brighton & Hove Albion (2nd), Preston North End (1st socks updated).
League One: Sheffield United (2nd), Charlton Athletic (1st), Scunthorpe United (1st, 2nd).
League Two: Morecambe (1st shorts corrected), Grimsby Town (2nd), Doncaster Rovers (1st, 2nd), Colchester United (3rd), Crewe Alexandra (2nd).
22 July - More 2016-17 Club Kits
Championship: Huddersfield Town (2nd), Norwich City (2nd, 3rd), Sheffield Wednesday (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
League Two: Colchester United (1st, 2nd).
21 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Everton (2nd), Hull City (2nd).
Championship: Newcastle United (2nd, 3rd).
League One: Oldham Athletic (1st, 2nd, 3rd*).
20 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Chelsea (2nd).
Championship: Nottingham Forest (1st socks corrected), Wigan Athletic (2nd, 3rd), Preston North End (1st, 2nd).
League One: Peterborough United (1st), Coventry City (2nd).
League Two: Leyton Orient (1st socks confirmed), Yeovil Town (1st, 2nd*).
19 July - 2016-17 Updates
Scottish Premiership: Hamilton Academical (2nd), Celtic (2nd), St Johnstone (1st), Rangers (1st).
Scottish Championship: Greenock Morton (1st socks and other detailing confirmed), St Mirren (1st socks confirmed).
Scottish League One: Alloa Athletic (1st, 2nd*), Brechin City (1st, 2nd*), Peterhead (1st*, 2nd*), Queen's Park (1st*, 2nd*), Stenhousemuir (1st*, 2nd*).
Scottish League Two: Stirling Albion (1st, 2nd*), Arbroath (2nd), Berwick Rangers (1st*, 2nd*), Clyde (1st, 2nd), Elgin City (1st*, 2nd*).
With all first kits confirmed and just a handful of change kits to be released, that's it for the Scottish section for the time being.
17 July - 2016-17 Updates
Scottish Premiership: Heart of Midlothian (2nd), Hamilton Academical (1st), Motherwell (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
Scottish Championship: Dumbarton (1st, 2nd).
Scottish League One: Stranraer (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Livingston (1st).
Scottish League Two: Annan Athletic (1st*, 2nd*), Montrose (1st*, 2nd*), Forfar Athletic (1st, 2nd*).
15 July - 2016-17 Updates
I'm going to focus on Scottish clubs today.
Scottish Premiership: Partick Thistle (1st, 2nd), Inverness Caledonian Thistle (1st, 2nd), Ross County (1st, 2nd).
Scottish Championship: Raith Rovers (1st*), 2nd), Hibernian (1st, 2nd), St Mirren (1st).
Scottish League One: Albion Rovers (1st*, 2nd, 3rd*).
Scottish League Two: Edinburgh City (1st, 2nd).
I have been considering whether I was correct to set up a new section for Edinburgh City following their promotion to the SPFL and have come to the conclusion that they are in fact a continuation of the club founded in 1928. The critical point is that although the club stopped fielding a team in 1955, Edinburgh City Football Club Ltd continued to exist and ran a social club. In 1986 Postal United FC were incorporated into the limited company and became the football section. There is, therefore, clear continuity between the original and modern club so I have merged the files.
The image on the left is a fragment of a rare team photograph from 1938 when for a short period the team included the club colours of Leander Pink, Oxford and Cambridge Blue in their playing strip. The monogram badge in these colours can be clearly seen.
14 July - 2016-17 Updates
Championship: Birmingham City (2nd colour corrected).
League One: Gillingham (1st, 2nd, 3rd socks confirmed).
League Two: Wycombe Wanderers (1st, 2nd), Carlisle United (1st, 2nd).
13 July - 2016-17 Updates
We're loving this here at HFK Towers! It's the new Ethiopia shirt and a fine example of something that is so far in the direction of bad it comes out on the other side and is good. My thanks to Neil Morris, our man in Adis Ababa for sharing.
Premier League: Watford (1st, 2nd), Totteham Hotspur (1st, 2nd 3rd), Leicester City (3rd sock detailing added).
Championship: Birmingham City (2nd).
League One: Gillingham (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
League Two: Mansfield Town (1st*, 2nd shorts/socks confirmed), Accrington Stanley (1st, 2nd).
Former members: Tranmere Rovers.
12 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Southampton (1st, 2nd).
Championship: Barnsley (1st kit colour corrected), Blackburn Rovers (1st).
League One: AFC Wimbledon (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Walsall (1st, 2nd), Oxford United (1st, 2nd).
League Two: Luton Town (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Mansfield Town (2nd), Hartlepool United (1st), Stevenage (1st, 2nd), Plymouth Argyle (shirt sponsor added).
10 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: Manchester City (1st), Leicester City (3rd).
Championship: Queens Park Rangers (1st, 2nd, 3rd), Newcastle United (1st), Leeds United (1st, 3rd).
League Two: Morecambe (1st, 2nd).
9 July - 2016-17 Updates
Premier League: West Bromwich Albion (2nd).
Championship: Huddersfield Town (1st), Barnsley (2nd), Brighton & Hove Albion (3rd*), Aston Villa (1st, 2nd), Norwich City (1st).
League Two: Leyton Orient (1st, 2nd).
Former members: York City (1st).
Well. we're back. Honestly, I leave the country for two weeks and look at the mess I find! Has anyone not resigned (apart from Jeremy Corbyn obviously)? Unfortunately I was flying back from Poland when Wales played Portugal so missed the match but despite the defeat, everyone here is immensely proud of our boys.
I'll focus on bringing the Euro 2016 section up to date first and then turn to all the new club kits that have been released over the last fortnight.
Premier League: Burnley (1st), AFC Bournemouth (2nd).
Championship: Wolverhampton Wanderers (2nd).
League One: Milton Keynes Dons (1st, 2nd, 3rd).
21 June - Euro 2016 Update
Last night's superb demolition of Russia by Wales provides a suitable point for me to sign off for a two-week break.
Both Group B games have been added.
20 June - Euro 2016 Update
Due to what I can only describe as a major administrative error, the next two weeks of Euro 2016 coincide with my hols. Inexplicably, UEFA did not reply to my emails requesting that they change the dates of the tournament so I'm afraid there will be no more updates after tomorrow until I return in a fortnight's time. At that stage we'll just have to see if the UK is still in Europe in every sense.
Last night's Group A games have been added.
League One: Millwall (1st), Swindon Town (1st shorts confirmed).
League Two: Exeter City (1st, 2nd, 3rd*).
Scottish Championship: Dunfermline Athletic (1st, 2nd).
Former members: Lincoln City.
I've restored the link to the Fanfoot51 site which contains a history French club and national team kits and replaced the old text links with banners.
18 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday's matches have been added.
17 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday afternoon we allowed our team of undocumented, underage interns out of the cellar where they are confined to enjoy the daylight while yours truly retired to the pub handily situated next door to HFK Towers here in the Welsh Valleys to watch the Wales v England match along with the rest of the village. It has to be said that Gareth Bale's free kick was met with a, shall we say enthusiastic response. However, after Sturridge pinched the late winner the mood was a little different. I had no idea so many words in the Welsh language start with an "F" and end with "kin".
Yesterday's matches have been added.
Premier League: Liverpool (2nd).
League One: Swindon Town (1st).
Scottish Premiership: Heart of Midlothian (1st).
This rather poor quality photograph is of Port Vale in 1912-13. I had interpreted this as showing claret and light blue tops, which would have been consistent with their previous colours. However, I've now had confirmation that the shirts are in fact black and amber. Embarrasingly, the club seem to have taken my previous version as the model for their new third kit. Still, the new shirts do look good.
I've revised the Swindon Town graphics 1904 to 1935. I now believe the variations apparent in contemporary photographs are the result of fading and inconsistancies in film stock.
16 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday's matches have been added.
15 June - Euro 2016 Update
Yesterday's Group F matches have been added.
Scottish Premiership: Aberdeen (2nd).
Historical Football Kits is featured in a new article on the British Ideas Corporation website.
13 June - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Sunderland (3rd shorts & socks confirmed).
Championship: Derby County (1st), Fulham (2nd*), Rotherham United (3rd).
Scottish League One: East Fife (1st, 2nd*).
I've updated the Euro section, adding competitition patches and tweaking some details now that we can see the final production versions of strips in action. The ever-popular match-by-match sections are now open also.
Please don't send me kit details for the tournament unless you spot a mistake. I am monitoring all the matches and will update the site regularly.
9 June - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: Sunderland (3rd), West Ham United (2nd).
Championship: Leeds United (2nd).
8 June - 2016-17 Update
League One: Sheffield United (1st), Northampton Town (2nd).
7 June - 2016-17 Update
Premier League: AFC Bournemouth (trim on 1st kit corrected).
League Two: Crawley Town (1st, 2nd).
More Victorian Discoveries
Andy Boocock has discovered details of Wrexham's first proper uniform strip which was introduced in October 1873. Brian Webb has found evidence that Middlesbrough briefly wore navy jerseys for the first part of the 1890-91 season before reverting to white in January 1891. This proves the "blue" tops previously dated 1892-95 were in fact navy and worn rather earlier.
I've reassessed my 1905-06 Brentford graphic. This is based on the rather poor quality photograph shown here (courtesy of Brentford FC Memorabilia) which suggests the usual blue shirts with thin gold stripes were reversed for this season. However, given what we now know about the orthographic film stock of the period that was insensitive to blue light but oversensitive to yellow, I no longer believe this to be the case.
We now know that Burton Albion's distinctive crest goes back to the club's formation in 1950-51.
3 June - A Correction
I got my visitors figures muddled in the last entry. HFK receives over 1.5m visits a year, that's a monthly average in excess of 100,000.
Premier League: AFC Bournemouth (1st), Swansea City (1st, 2nd).
Championship: Cardiff City (2nd), Birmingham City (1st).
League One: Coventry City (1st).
League Two: Cambridge United (1st).
Scottish Premiership: Kilmarnock (1st).
Scottish Championship: Greenock Morton (1st kit - the fans have spoken!).
1 June - Ten Years of Historical Kits
This month HFK celebrates its tenth anniversary. Back in the middle ages, when we launched, our graphics looked like this and when the site was featured in the national press, we had so many visitors that our server crashed.
From the beginning we encouraged visitors to get involved and contribute their own research and within days, the first emails started to roll in. We did not forsee that HFK would end up curating thousands of contributions from hundreds of visitors (our email archive alone fills 1.4GB) many of them the product of painstaking research and now published on HFK for the first time.
In those early days we monitored the number of visitors each month and got excited when the numbers reached four figures. Today we average over 100,000 visitors every month.
I want to take this opportunity to say thank you to all our supporters and contributors. HFK would not be the same without you.