Every four years, European countries come together in an act of unity to showcase some of the world’s best football. But when the whistle blows, any form of friendship – political, club, or otherwise – is put aside, and teams battle it out on the pitch for the European Championships trophy.
This is the first time in the tournament’s 56-year history that 24 teams will be competing for European glory. Someone must have decided that, hey, if Uruguay, with a population of three million, could make it to the semi-finals of the 2010 World Cup, surely Albania, with more or less the same population, can make it far in Europe?
From retro to classic to futuristic, Euro 2016 will feature sportswear of all kinds. 24 teams means a whopping 48 kits, and we have them rated here for you!
Nike introduces a modern and more futuristic look for the Euro 2016 hosts, as well as some of the other teams as we will see a little later. It includes a mesh panel on the front, with the iconic rooster and Nike tick featuring on the chest. The sole star above the rooster represents the country’s 1998 World Cup victory.
I’ve always loved France’s traditional shade of blue but this seems like an overkill with keeping the colour solid in the shorts. Perhaps they were going for the doctor look? Great contrast with the deep blue in the sleeves and red socks though. (3.5 out of 5)
The white body and maroon and blue sleeves contrast provide for a more striking look for France’s away kit. But again, the solid white from shirt to shorts doesn’t quite work for me. It does look better in white though. (3.5 out of 5)
Albania has dropped Adidas and linked up with Italian brand Macron for the country’s first presence at a major tournament. A sublimated striped panel is featured on the front, which fades as it moves down the shirt. Its collar is termed by Macro as “Korean collar”, and interestingly, looks identical to Nike’s South Korean 2014 World Cup jerseys. Its collar features the text “Ti Shqipёri mё jep nder”, which means “Albania gives me honour”.
The fading striped panelling down the shirt provides a good contrast to the shorts, even if they’re the same shade. I’d prefer something less subtle though with a touch of design on the shoulders to spread things out. (3 out of 5)
The away kit is easier on the eye simply due to the red and black pairing. Considering that it’s its first European Championships, Albania should be happy with this design. (3.5 out of 5)
Produced by Spanish supplier Joma, Romania’s kit is a combination of the Romanian flag colours – also evident in the “v” of the collar itself. A contrasting red/yellow strip runs down the side from the under arms to the end of the shirt. There’re also subtle vertical tonal pinstripes down the front but they’re rather unrecognisable at first sight.
Whoaaa, watch out, corneas! Did someone order too much yellow? If any of you readers are going to their games, do be sure to bring your sunglasses along or be ready to schedule a visit to the optometrist after! (1 out of 5)
This is simply a yellow-red reverse of the home kit. I’m just not a fan of pants having the exact same solid colour as the top. There isn’t enough designs on both shirt and shorts. (1 out of 5)
Designed by Puma, the Switzerland kit introduces a bold and modern look, with both the home and away kits featuring the country’s traditional red and white.
A thick white line runs down the shoulders and sleeves, providing some contrast to what would have otherwise been a rather plain design, save for the alternate faded strips on the body of the shirt. (3.5 out of 5)
The away kit has a white base and a red chest band with the Swiss logo on it. It also features a V-neck as opposed to the home kit’s crew neck. Very classy. (4 out of 5)
The England kit uses the same futuristic template as France.
The light blue on the sleeves are new design elements by Nike. The royal blue line down the sides of the shirt adds a touch of class, but again, there’s that solid block where shirt meets shorts where contrast is missing. Still, the good pairing of the shades of blue and white gives it a sophisticated look. (4 out of 5)
The vibrant red and blue is indeed striking. And while that huge body of solid colours may work for white, there just seems to be something missing for the red away kit. Nike’s kept the same shade of blue in the line down the sides of the shirt. (3.5 out of 5)
Adidas combines maroon and gold for Russia’s home kit. I’m not entirely sure about the all-over print pattern of Russian Football Union badge though. Surely it would look better on a place mat? (2.5 out of 5)
In an apparent move to appeal to the younger generation, Adidas splattered a huge striking eagle print across the chest. But I personally think that would look better on a customised T-shirt instead of a jersey. (2.5 out of 5)
This is Slovakia’s first ever European championship participation and they should be proud of this modern and clean design by Nike. It’s quite like the Switzerland jersey with three logos across the front of the top chest.
There’s something about white and blue that matches so well and is pleasing to the eye. Perhaps it just reminds me of the clouds and sky. Thick blue broad stripes feature down the shoulders to the sleeves where they then wrap around the front of the cuffs. (4.5 out of 5)
Bold blue on the body of the jersey with a teal-like blue stripe down the shoulders and sleeves makes for a good pairing. The subtlety of the tonal striping vertical panels is a classy touch. (4 out of 5)
This retro design by Adidas features the brand’s iconic three stripes on the shoulders. It’s also a combination of the Dragons’ traditional red and white. (3.5 out of 5)
The away kit is based on the same template as the home kit, but features two shades of grey and neon green has replaced the white Adidas lines on the shoulders. Where’s the Welsh in this? No wonder Bale doesn’t look too impressed. (2.5 out of 5)
Again, another retro design by Adidas. What would have otherwise turned out rather plain looking has worked well for the German home kit, as simplicity is consistent throughout. Classically completed with German colours on the cuffs of the sleeves. (4 out of 5)
Well, Adidas did try. But this look just isn’t fitting for all the class that the German national team encompasses. It also looks too similar to the Welsh away kit. Was this decided with a coin toss? (1.5 out of 5)
I know it is Northern Ireland’s first-ever presence at the European Championships, but did someone tell them we’re now 56 years after the tournament first started?
Another a retro look by Adidas, especially with the blue strip and white going across the chest. The iconic Adidas three stripes feature going down the shoulder in white on dark blue sleeves. (3 out of 5)
This is a simpler and much more straightforward look. Plus, it’s much gentler on the eyes. (3.5 out of 5)
While Adidas seem to be opting for retro, Nike’s clearly taken off in the other direction with futuristic designs.
Poland’s home kit is very nicely done by Nike, with a red stripe around the neck that takes the attention away from the lack of print on the shoulders. (4 out of 5)
Gradient sloped stripes down the shirt adds a beautiful contrast to the red on the pants. But perhaps white shorts would have been more striking. (3.5 out of 5)
I don’t quite agree with those buttons, think we’re too 2016 for them. The splatter of chequered yellow on the front looks rather messy too, almost like all-yellow would have been too plain and they needed to mix it up a little. (2.5 out of 5)
The bright yellow stripes on dark blue seems to work better than the other way around, but I still disagree with those buttons. Perhaps they’re pouring too much money into fighting the insurgents/Russia that it’s cheaper to just steal old designs? (2 out of 5)
I’ve always been a fan of Croatia’s jerseys. Known for its white and red chequered prints, this Euro 2016 kit features those chequered prints very fancily done with soft curves. (4 out of 5)
Just two colours feature on Croatia’s away kit. The solid all-blue shorts and socks with stunning red stripes panel on the calves of the socks are very much like the ones for England. (4 out of 5)
There’s just about little enough going on on the Czech home kit to pull it off. It’s a striking design with the bold chevron front graphic with various tones of red. It features the Puma and federation logos aligned just above the dent of the stripes to complete the look. (4.5 out of 5)
The blue stripes down the shoulders adds a bit of life to the otherwise all-white jersey. In contrast with the home kit, the Puma and federation logos have been flipped 90 degrees and neatly placed across the top part of the chest. (4.5 out of 5)
The subtle, triangular graphic print is a nice soft touch, making up for the absence of anything on the shoulders. (4 out of 5)
Here, Adidas stuck with the concept of triangles but this time in different tones of red and yellow. Credit to them for daring to be different. But this is perhaps a case of trying too hard. It just looks like the bitter Diego Costa had one too many sangrias for being left out of the squad and threw up on them. (1.5 out of 5)
Whoaaa, where do I even begin? Is Peter Parker actually Turkish or did someone steal from Spiderman’s wardrobe? Looks like a Spiderman-wannabe getting caught in his own webs. Plus, doesn’t it look like the Turkey logo is stickered-on? (1 out of 5)
The baby blue shade is a little too Barbie and Ken for me but the deep red stripe down the side and in the socks provide a good contrast. Good save, Nike! (3 out of 5)
I love the simple upper chest block of black and its contrast with the vibrant red. Great touch of fluorescent yellow in the Adidas stripes down the side and on the sleeve cuffs. Professional and certainly makes De Bruyne look older than a 15 year old. (4 out of 5)
The away kit is designed in honour of Belgium’s rich cycling history. Inspired by famous Belgian blue cycling jerseys, it combines the main Vapour Blue with the Belgian flag. Rather easily confusing though – switch the red and yellow and you get the German flag. (3.5 out of 5)
I’ve personally always been a fan of Italy’s jerseys and this year’s no exception. The slightly lighter shade of blue as the base with a touch of gold in the stripes on the sleeves and on the insides of the collar is very classily done. There’s a good combination of stripes and a good balance. (5 out of 5)
The tri-coloured stripe representing the Italian flag running down the front of the shirt provides a great contrast to an otherwise plain jersey. Federation crest well-placed as a break on the stripe. Unlike the home kit, it features a collar, which I’m normally not a fan of but this kit’s been very neatly done by Puma. Classy as always, Italy. (5 out of 5)
Not sure about the huge logo of Three, a sponsor of the Irish Football Association splashed right in the middle of the chest. But I’m, however, liking the diagonal stripes. The typical Gaelic font for the players’ names is also a good traditional touch. (3/5)
Much more sophisticated look than the home kit. (4/5)
A traditionally classy look. The contrasting royal light blue on the collar as well as the cuffs of the sleeve represents Sweden well. The tones of horizontal stripes across the jersey’s also a brilliant touch by Adidas. (4 out of 5)
The away kit’s a totally unexpected and completely different design from the home kit. There’s a cotton-like effect for the fabric. The tonal grey colour block across the front separating the white and navy blue blocks makes for a bit of a retro look, which doesn’t work for me. It looks like something the boyfriend I had when I was 15 would wear to the mall just to pretend he’s sporty. (3 out of 5)
Heads up Turkey, this is what a good balance looks like. The great gradient graphical lines across the front gives it a touch of class. A thick white stripe features down the sleeve, with the Austrian flag at the end to round it up. (4.5/5)
A white base with bold black line on the sleeve, and a V-shaped collar top off a simple yet sophisticated look. (4/5)
The traditional solid design (top image) beat out its striped rivals to win the vote held by Adidas and the Hungarian national team on jersey designs. Hungary will be competing in their first European Championships since 1972 in this traditional design. (4 out of 5)
The away kit is the exact reverse of red and white of the home kit. An identical green strip as the one on the home kit also features on the sleeve and hem of the jersey. I personally prefer the away striped version to the chosen away kit though. (4 out of 5)
Simplicity at its best. The colours of the Icelandic flag feature in a classy strip down the right of the shirt. Printed on the interior of the back of the neck is “Fyrir Island” in words, which means “For Iceland”. (4 out of 5)
This is a bold and striking look for the away kit. The modern collar is a good touch. The word “Island” features on the tape of the inside collar. (4.5 out of 5)
Based on the same design as the new England and France kits, Portugal’s home kit is a combination of the main light red and a darker shade together with the traditional green, which features on the collar as well as down the sides of the shirt. “Nação” (Nation) and “Valente” (Brave) are knitted into the cuffs. (3.5 out of 5)
Not quite sure about this baby-sky-blue colour nor how captain Ronaldo would feel about it. It kinda seems more like a colour for referees or goalkeepers. (2 out of 5)
Of the big three, Puma’s the clear winner for me. Simplistic and classy as seen in the Italian home and away kits. Adidas has done a good job with the designs this tournament. Personally prefer its slick yet sporty look for most and touch of retro for others. Nike’s mostly opted for a futuristic look, which isn’t too bad, except a bit more variation would look better as a transition from shirt to shorts. Perhaps the light blue for Portugal was the deal breaker for me.
What are your thoughts on the Euro 2016 kits? Which are your favourites and which are eye-sores? Do share with us, we’d love to know what you think about these designs!
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