Club Classics: Hummel, Holsten, Hoddle & ‘That Hotspur Shirt’

Very special guest and dear friend of Sartorial Soccer, Matthew Powell, takes us back to 1985 as we celebrate one of the all-time classic Spurs shirts.

It was an iconic shirt of its era. It was the Tottenham Hotspur home jersey from 1985 to 1987. It was made by Hummel. And it was different, new; an advance on what had come before: plain shirts, usually altered every couple of years by the stripe in the fabric or the position of the badge.

A work of art, this jersey has a sleek simplicity which just works: a stylish design which makes the most of the trademark Hummel chevrons. The first team tracksuit of the day was a beauty also and along similar ‘lines’.

The fact that Perryman, Hoddle, Waddle, Ardiles, Allen et al were wearing it helped, of course.

This was a decent time for Spurs: under David Pleat in the ’86/‘87 season a 3rd place league finish was secured along with a league Cup Semi Final and a place in the FA Cup Final. Only Coventry City in the way. What could go wrong?

But for the Wembley showdown The Lilywhites wore a new kit, an unveiling of the following season’s design. A mix up resulted in half the team wearing shirts without a sponsor. Slightly embarrassing.

Coventry won the final.

Hoddle popped off to France. And Pleat departed the following season, for ‘non-footballing’ reasons. But I won’t go into that…

Hummel logo
Hummel means “Bumblebee” in German, hence the logo

Hummel have always made quality designs and at their peak were in charge of kitting out Real Madrid, and um, Coventry City.

In recent times they have returned to supply the likes of Aston Villa, Middlesbrough and Rangers. They’re still keeping it simple. Still keeping it stylish.

The company itself is perhaps older than you may think. Formed in 1923, its origins are actually German (where else) but were introduced into the North European market in 1970 and have had an association with Scandinavia ever since, particularly Denmark where they are now based.

Spurs, Hummel, Tottenham, Classic, Kit
Original replica purchased circa ’85

But to return to the shirt in hand, this Iconic Spurs shirt from the 1980s will resonate with supporters from that era: A time when domestic silverware was so important (the only thing on offer at the time).

Money wasn’t king. Transfers were far less important, without even the thought of transfer windows or financial fair play. You could even pass the ball back to the ‘keeper, you know.

Was it better? I’ll leave you to decide. It was certainly different…

About the Author:

Matthew Powell is widely regarded as Basildon’s pre-eminent commentator on 1980s football shirt design.

A visionary midfielder in his day, Powell is still a nomadic, nostalgic, creative force operating in the roving free-role his mercurial talents deserve.

You can follow Powell on Twitter where he is enigmatically known as @YesYesMatty.

If you have an idea for a shirt we should cover, then please contact us here!

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