Inter Milan wore a special edition mash-up shirt in the Milan derby on Sunday to celebrate their 20 year association with Nike.
The footballing equivalent of a patchwork rug shows how far Nike have experimented with Inter’s conventional black and blue stripes over the years and the end result was actually quite glorious.
The incredible kits proved a good omen for the nerazzurri as they survived a late challenge to run out 3-2 winners over city rivals Milan with goals from Matias Vecino, Stefan de Vrij and Lautaro Martínez.
Splicing together 10 of the greatest nerazzurri shirts of the past 2 decades, Nike conjured up the spirit of Internazionale heroes from Ronaldo and Javier Zanetti, to Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Mauro Icardi (ok, maybe not so much the last one!).
With the sleeves in plain black, a white Nike swoosh and gold Pirelli sponsor’s logo, the kits featured on the front of the shirts were from the 1998-99, 2008-09, 2010-11, 2013-14 and 2017-18 seasons.
On the back there were references to kits from 2009-10, 2011-12, 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17 with players’ names and numbers written in gold.
Nike have provided these celebratory shirts to clubs including Arsenal and Barcelona before but to our knowledge, Inter Milan’s mash-up was the first to see the light of day in a competitive fixture.
Mash-up jerseys that bring together a range of design influences are a modern take on the retro shirt and this particular version has already claimed it’s own little slice of glory in the San Siro.
Whether we live to see the days of a mash-up of mash-ups is quite another story . . .