You are as likely to find grass-roots football and non-league kits as those from Nike and the Premier League on Sartorial.Soccer, so we’ve been looking for the right time to feature the Billy Goats of Caversham United on these pages and we’re delighted that moment has finally arrived!
This week, following a fairy-tale season that began with an existential crisis and a frantic search for players on social media, Caversham United from the 4th Division of the Reading & District Sunday League were finally promoted after rivals Borussia Teeth were found to have fielded an ineligible player.
The Sunday league heroes were founded under new ownership as recently as 2015, having been previously known as AFC Palmer and this season they have built a fervent social media following, inspired by the Twitter exploits of AS Roma and our mutual friends, St Anthony’s.
That growing army of online fans have bought into the sense of fun and love for the game displayed by the amateur club from the banks of the River Thames, and have helped create a new identity for the team.
A series of Twitter polls with the support of sponsors footballkitbox.com chose “Billy Goats” as their new nickname, before designers from around the world submitted ideas for a new badge and of course the kit we toast now.
The competition to design the new club crest drew more than 2,000 votes before a quest for new kit and colours saw Twitter user Jack Veness’ winning entry brought to life by the team at footballkitbox and made by Kappa.
The YouTube generation have taken a string of amateur UK clubs to their hearts, but there are still very few Sunday league clubs who could boast a better kit or level of fan engagement than the Billy Goats.
As well as a notable network of social media friends and contacts at football clubs including fellow Goats and Bundesliga giants 1 FC Köln, Caversham United have made social responsibility strides too, partnering with men’s cancer charity Balls to Cancer who’s name features on the club kit.
With their tongue placed firmly in their cheek and having never taken themselves too seriously, Caversham United embody everything we love about grass-roots football and that kit has to be the greatest Sunday league shirt of all time.
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