The great Puma Newcastle United shirt rip-off
Posted on June 10th, 2013 | 89 Comments |
In the top photo, you can see an example of a £7.50 training T-Shirt from the existing Puma “Spirit” range side by side with the new Newcastle United change shirt with an almost identical design.
Now before I proceed, please don’t get me wrong. I’m not going to try and suggest that the two are actually the same items with just very minor changes in detailing as I haven’t examined them side by side. Nor am I trying to make the general point that replica team football shirts are a rip-off either, Freddy Shepherd and many others have made that point already.
However, writing as a designer myself, it is but one example among many of Puma’s lazy, poor and rehashed designs. The standard of the design is the same as you would expect to find from one of Mike Ashley’s sweatshop brands, and the same is true of the quality too, especially so if you remember the shirts of Newcastle United’s previous supplier, Adidas. For a supposedly premium product, they are an insult to Newcastle United’s fans, not to mention those of other clubs they supply. Then again, I am not a big replica shirt buyer personally, so I would very much like to hear the views of those of you who are.
There’s another thing too. Whilst the club’s sponsorship with Wonga is a large and highly controversial issue on it’s own, you might also observe that in the new kit, the club’s colours (Denim blue with “Wonga” blue details), or at least the detailing anyway, has been determined by the colour of Wonga’s corporate branding. Also, the new previously all black and white home kits will also incorporate similar blue detailing too (see below). Sponsorship and displaying a company’s logo is one thing, however, choosing Wonga blue for the strip is taking things a stage further, especially so when it becomes a part of the traditional black and white home kit. Some might say these are just minor details, but I would say they are insidious.
Finally, before I sign off on my mini-rant, here are some more examples of Puma’s lazy design, of which I could post many. They are followed by Newcastle United’s 2013-14 home black, white and Wonga blue home shirt.
Can you spot the differences?