When Puma unveiled their range of third kits for the 2021/22 season they certainly got supporters talking.
The designs caused uproar primarily because of the absence of club badges. Add to that the fact that all the kits follow the same dull template – something that fans and football shirt aficionados have come to hate in recent years – and it’s fair to say that the German sportswear giants haven’t had a great few months.
Borussia Dortmund wore their third kit on Wednesday as they defeated Turkish side Besiktas in the Champions League, with Puma subsequently issuing an apology to Dortmund’s fans after the design, erm, let’s just say it wasn’t very well received.
We think Manchester City fans should be next on Puma’s list of people they need to issue apologies to.
Unlike the rest of the Puma third kits, the shirt Dortmund wore during their 2-1 win in Istanbul did actually feature the club’s crest on the front, albeit very faintly and with minimal detail.
This was reportedly a concession that Puma made after the club’s ultras had rejected the original design back in the summer.
However, still not happy with the design, the supporters have now received an apology from Puma chief executive Bjorn Gulden.
“We regret the anger of the fans and would like to apologise to them,” Gulden said following Dortmund’s win over Besiktas. “We really took the feedback to heart and will take it into account for future jerseys, just like in the past.”
Given that Puma are a German brand and own a 5% share of Borussia Dortmund, perhaps it’s not surprising that an apology was made. We doubt that City will be so lucky.
Pep Guardiola’s men have yet to debut their third kit, but hopefully, there won’t be much cause for the team to don the navy blue number with ‘Man City’ printed on the front. The shirt won’t be used for the Champions League trips to Paris Saint-Germain and Club Brugge as both sides’ home kits are predominately dark blue.
Therefore, Guardiola’s side’s game away at RB Leipzig in December could be the first time we see the disappointing design in action. That being said, it could be used in domestic competitions if necessary – possibly away to Brighton and Hove Albion in October or at Aston Villa in November.
Fan Brands – Man City
You may notice this piece of writing has been produced by a name you’re not familiar with on our regular Manchester City content.
That is because we are expanding our horizons and starting to bring even more to you from a whole host of different voices. We have appointed a whole host of people who – like our journalists – care deeply about what’s happening at Etihad Stadium – but sit in the stands rather than the press box.
We want to give you raw, authentic fan voices about the big issues at Man City – which is why the story you have read today might sit on Manchester Evening News for now, and is part of the MEN family, but is not representative of those who work there full time.
Keep your eyes peeled for more info on where you can read more from this author in the future. But in the meantime, we hope you enjoy what they have written.
As far as many City fans are concerned, they wouldn’t bat an eyelid if the strip were to never see the light of day. Some have likened the design to that of a pyjama top, or even the kind of t-shirt a 12-year-old would wear in the pool on holiday.
As a club, City are proud of their heritage, and kits play a massive part in that. In recent years both Nike and Puma have been a bit too experimental with some of their City designs, but omitting the club crest from the shirt trumps any previous complaint.
Puma – send us an apology and let’s put this sorry episode behind us.
Do you think Puma should apologise to City? Follow our new City Fan Brands Writer Alex Brotherton on Twitter to get involved in the discussion and give us your thoughts in the comments section below.