Poll: Favourite England Kit Ever

While we’re on the subject of polls, John suggested voting for the best England kit ever. I’ll try and get some illustrations up to remind everyone of the nation’s kits over the years but for now, just from memory what were the best and worst England kits in your opinion?

For me, the best without a doubt is the current home kit – an absolute classic in my view. The worst has to be the 92-93 pale blue third kit with the large ‘cartoony’ lion print. Although I have to say I wasn’t fond of the 94-95 away kit either – very dark red with a really floppy collar!

25 Replies to “Poll: Favourite England Kit Ever

  1. nice one john.
    best ever- the 1986 white/navy/white worn for mexico.
    worst-euro 96 indigo-to be worn with jeans monstrosity!

  2. special mention though for the last admiral kits,i owned the home kit and wore it whilst watching Robson and co in Espana 82 thrash the french whilst eating jam butties.

  3. After reviewing them all in TC2…I’ve decided to split my choices into home and away…

    Best Home: Mexico 86

    Worst Home: 97-99 (worn at France 98)

    Best Away: 84-87 (such a vibrant, shiny red)

    Worst Away: Euro 96 (grey abomination)

    If I had to choose a definitive best and worst I guess I’d have to go for the 2 away ones…just.

  4. Best Home: Combining retro with new: 1999-2001 worn at the ill-fated Euro 2000.

    Worst Home: 2003-2005 worn at Euro 2004. Too much red.

  5. Best home – 2003-05 or 2005-07 – I actually like the fact that red is incorporated to signify the St George’s cross.

    Best away – 1966 World Cup final -simple as most kits should be.

    Worst home – 1995-96 – pale blue trim???
    Worst away – I’m with John – the all dark red of 1994-95 or the cartoon lions of 1992-93

  6. For me it was the sky blue aertex shirts worn in Mexico 70. Although, I believe it was worn for one single match.

  7. Best – 1980-1982 Admiral Home and Away – Classic

    Worst – 1994 Umbro Away – The wrong colour red (it was a very dark red) and had horrible collars!

  8. Best…

    1. Current… (understated masterpiece)
    2. Mexico 86… (simple and elegant)
    3. Italia 90… (slighly garish pattern, but classic)

    honourable mention… Japan/Korea 02 (seemingly modelled on Mexico 86 kit but with contempory red trim, nice)


    1… France 98… (“made from the remnants of a flagmakers dustbin”, that the Umbro wordmark was twice the size as the England legend should have led to a kicking for the designer)
    2… Espana 82…(I don’t understand the love of this one, cheap and tacky looking, wrong shade of blue and just doesn’t look like an England shirt)
    3…Euro 96 away (not bothered about it not being red, it was just ugly)

    Dishonourable mention…Late 70’s Admiral kit with red/blue striped collar (looks like anything that was at hand was stitched on in a hurry).

    The Sky blue lions away kit didn’t really offend me, and the home shirt meant for USA 94, with the smaller England crest on the collar, I hated that at the time but don’t mind it now, the shorts were and are naff though.

  9. les,i love the admiral kit from 80-82 because as a 10 year old kid it brought back fond memories,europa 80,espana 82 (the first world cup i can really remember properly,i remember bits and bobs from argentina78 but not much) bulldog bobby the mascot,’This Time’ the England record, innocence of youth i suppose.happy days.

  10. for me
    best home…………………………………..
    1. 1988 home +simple yet modern-ish design – those bad euro 88 results!
    2.late 60s/mexico 70 umbro. +simple but class! – anybody could make those kits now!
    3.euro 2004 home + good design plus reversable shirt and rare time navy numbers was better choice due the red shoulder trim but -inside design looked like an m&s copy kit and navy trim side should have been worn by the pros when whirt shorts were worn insted of navy pair!.
    4.euro 96 home +and_ was the fresh new simple look with pale blue trim but that meant the lack of red numbers.
    5. wc 1998 + lossely based on euro 88 kit and looked great on the computer games of its era…. was that an consideration.. !!!??? but big big – was the size of the umbro logo which meant the shirt looked like team umbro not england!
    worst home………………………………
    1. 1984-86 home ok but over-ratted for me!
    2. both admiral 70s kits great shirts but let down badly by shade of the blue shorts and poor socks!
    3.2007-09 home. again actully a good kit but let down badly by being too simarlar to the kit before it! and not as good!
    best away………………………………
    1.away red 1966-1970 umbro + again even without that world cup win simple but class and again – easy to make these days and plus every away kit bar one since the 1997-99 red(which to be fair to umbro should of worked well but did’nt hence its not one my worst away kits) has tired to copy yet failed big time for me..( im not sure on new 2010 yet either way until i see england play a game in it).
    2.away red 1984-87 same design as home yet i think its far better for some reason maybe the brightness of the red!
    3.joint between 70s admiral red kits (royal blue instead of navy blue does not hurt the red kits unlike home ones) umbro 1987-89 ,umbro euro 2000, umbro 2008/09(does not go for simple 66-ish look and all the better for it going by most umbro away designs) as up to end of 2009 these are the only away kits that have been any good for me as a whole umbros home kits have been a good level or two better then the away ones……
    worst away………………………………
    1.joint between euro 2004 red away (st george crosses that work so well on home white kits don’t on red away one! plus shorts were to sliver-ish!)or wc 2006 red away (ok but im not for gold numbers)
    2.1990-92 red away. a good kit but for me the oppsite of 1984-87 away kit in that despite being virtly the same design as home kit of the same time it was strangly not as good for some reason?!?
    3.grey 96away it would be my worst away kit by an good distance but for one reason………. that it would have been an very very good rare 3rd kit! i loved every 3rd pale blue kit there has been since 1970 but in morden era in bright sunsine it may not work against croatia and paraguay home kits the very games it would be needed!!! and both wear blue socks … that 96 kit would of advoid this but with current fifa/uefa dark vs light colour rules(do even african 3rd world countrys watch on black and white tvs…. i know few would even own one but surley the few around would be colour ones by now!) im not surpised by the secert navy 3rd kit and i would guess shorts would be home or away navy or white or even an 3rd red short?? socks would be a 3rd navy pair if not home or away white or red pair.
    also “shout outs” too……………
    1970 wc kit bag 5 great outfield/gk kits!
    1988/89 all 3 outfield kits all identicall design and all great!
    1990/91 3 semi identicall outfield kits plus 2 good gk kits!
    both 1992/93 gk kits umbro getting the zig zag design right 2nd time around!!!
    navy wc 1998 gk kit went well with home outfield kit
    navy 2005 gk kit same reason
    sky blue 2008/09 gk kit same as away red outfield at the time.
    and all 5 sky blue 3rd kits even if only half were ever worn!!!!

  11. just realised i,ve left current home kit out of my top 5… mistake i think but then again it is a semi rugby-ish shirt! on the subject of umbro being afaid of media backlash from releasing a 3rd kit i think a good way round this is to release an limited edition 3rd kit(say max 10,000 made per year about 750 per child and adult size) with end date on label (as current home/away england kits do)but instead of a 2 year cycle as home and away kits do this 3rd kit would have a min of 4 years and max of 10 years timelife! of course when released it would be made of the most up to date materials at that momount but it would have to be an simple plain design as fashions change over that great amount of time! but i think this would be good value even though it would only be worn only 1,2 maybe 3 times by the pros about the same as the old sky blue kits in the early 90s.because the current 2 year service of the home and away kits is poor value when compaired to the club kits! why well every 2 years england play about 20-30 games that 10-15 games per kit even clubs who change home and away kits every year (most change every 2)are wearing both kits combined a min of 40 games!!! i personly don’t think that (i think national kits are better value for money as though worn in fewer games they are worn by better players in more iconic games! but i think this would solve the problem of me missing england 3rd kits and poor parents could buy there kid a kit that would last years……….not that many stay the same size for more than 2 years…. daily mail et all don’t seem to get as upset about that as much as umbro realing new designs! l.o.l!

  12. i seem to remember a couple of related stories featuring the late great Brian Clough,when he was interviewed for the England manager he said to the FA bigwigs that the first thing he’d do was to put the team into a proper England kit and out of those ‘bloody pyjamas!’ there wearing now. I think this was refering to 1982 kit.
    The other one was Cloughie was so impressed by the England umbro kit of 84 that when the contract with adidas finished he told the board to get umbro onboard with a Forest version of the kit.

  13. The current home and away are the first I have truly liked since the magnificent 84-87 kits (with their stylishly minimal shadow stripes and lovely navy v necks with just enough red and white detail). The current offer truly matches the style of the 60s/70s basic kits with the materials of the day and fall the right side of the line between retro and classic.

    I always had a fondness for the 82 admiral shirts too, but it was definitely the wrong blue. As far as bad shirts go, I remember being woefully disappointed with the 88 shirt with its plastic popper stud round collar and material that felt flimsy and horribly textured compared to its predecessor. Doesn’t look so bad with hindsight. The 90s were a woeful time for England kits post Italia 90- 94’s horrible little rubber badge in the collar, the powder blue cartoon lion shirts, the Euro 96 home shirt with the totally unjustifiable turquoise trim and the ugly mess of german army grey away kit. The 98 home kit which looks horribly dated a little over 10 years later and that red away shirt with the clip art flag of St George in the shadow weave. They were all further marred by the oversized text-only umbro mark of the day.

    Umbro pulled it together with 2 decent shirts following that (the Euro 2000 round neck and the WC 2002 thin red line shirts), but they swooped back to the worst of the mid 90s with that horrible 2004 shirt with the red shoulders pouring into the neck and all the way to the central badge. Nasty.

  14. My own personal view:

    Best home – England Home Euro 96
    Worst home – England Home Euro 2008 Qualifiers
    Best away – England Away 1966
    Worst away – England Away Euro 96

  15. best
    1, 1992/93 3rd kit, the 1 with the 3 big dark blue lion’s going down from the top of the shirt, pure genius and u won’t see a shirt like this again
    2, 1986 mexico world cup shirt white
    3, euro 96 home, with shearer in the form of his life, this cup was ours we just got robbed as usual


    1, the tragic grey of euro 96, what was that all about?
    2, 1994/95 dark red, truly awful
    3, 1998 home what we wore for france 98, the blue and red trim running down the sides of the shirt look totally tacky

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