Here’s a Huddersfield Town shirt that splits opinion right down the middle.
One man’s meat is another man’s poison, and whilst this shirt is regarded as a fan’s favourite in pockets of West Yorkshire; there are plenty who delight in declaring Gola’s early ’90s Terriers tops to be among the world’s worst football shirts.
To appreciate this shirt, you have to consider the time it came from.
The Terriers wore these kits between 1991 & 1993 and it’s fair to say they were not universally accepted in their day.
The red and black hoops were separated by waves of pulse like patterns, whilst Gola’s retro logo expanded across the middle to leave Huddersfield’s badge sat near the left armpit in its regular colours.
In those days, Huddersfield Town were a third tier side yet to move to the space-age curved rooves of the Kirklees Stadium (better known as the Alfred McAlpine, Galpharm or John Smith’s Stadium depending on your vintage!) who still called Leeds Road their home.
Back in 1991, Arsenal were decked in the era-defining bruised banana, Borussia Dortmund had brought their first fluorescent football shirt to the fore; and Right Said Fred were in the charts with I’m Too Sexy.
Football shirts were loud, proud, experimental and expressive.
What a time it was to be alive!
Under the guidance of Eoin Hand and then Ian Ross, Town finished the 1991-92 season in 3rd place, only missing out on promotion to the 2nd tier through the play-offs.
The brightest memory of those Electric Hoops came in a notable comeback at Bury’s Gigg Lane, as the Terriers clawed their way back from 4-0 down to draw 4-4, with top-scorer Iwan Roberts and Phil Starbuck each grabbing a brace.
Unfortunately, Huddersfield couldn’t mount a similar challenge in 1992-1993, finishing in a lowly 15th place. Ian Ross departed the manager’s dug-out at the end of the season with Neil Warnock taking over the reigns for Town’s final campaign at Leeds Road.
Huddersfield have often worn combinations of red and black away from home, and Puma marked Town’s promotion to the Premier League in 2017-18 with a reboot of the so-called flash kits, further underlining the cult status of the electro-Dennis the Menace look.
Perhaps under-appreciated and misunderstood in their time, Gola’s Huddersfield Town away kit was one of a number of outrageous shirts that delivered an early 1990s electric shock to the world of football shirt design.
Love it or loathe it, the flash kit is an undisputed Terriers club classic design and with football shirt manufacturers returning to the adventurous, buccaneering kits of the past for inspiration; we owe a great debt of gratitude to those bold and barmy shirts of the 1990s.