AC Milan celebrated their 120th birthday with a gold-plated version of their world-famous Rossoneri stripes.
Milan were founded in December 1899 by Nottingham born football pioneer, Herbert Kilpin and a group of fellow English expats as the Milan Foot-Ball & Cricket Club.
Kilpin’s choice of colours were designed to invoke terror in their opponents and were central to his vision for the club:
“We’re going to be a team of devils. Our colours will be red like flames, and black like our opponents’ fear!”
Although the club still retains the English spelling of the city’s name, the 7 time European Cup winners would later become known as Associazione Calcio Milan or plain old “AC Milan” for short.
On Sunday afternoon, Milan marked the 120th anniversary of their foundation by wearing a special edition shirt for the goalless draw with Serie A rivals Sassuolo at the San Siro.
Not too dissimilar to this season’s thin red & black striped kits, the limited edition birthday shirts by Puma did feature some lavish gold details and an improved cut and material.
Many wrongly believe that the Rossoneri’s oval badge features St George’s cross in a tribute to Kilpin and the men who founded the club, but the red cross on white background is in fact dedicated to St Ambrose, the patron saint of Milan.
For the birthday version, that classic Serie A crest is drawn in gold whilst a special tag on the back of the neck is dedicated to Kilpin’s devilish early intentions.
Now if we have a grumble, it would be that as classy as these shirts clearly are; there’s just not enough of a difference between Milan’s 2019-20 design and this effort. Also, we’re no experts on anniversary etiquette, but if you have a date to mark, surely it’s the 125th rather than the 120th?
This is a special edition shirt for a glorious occasion but despite the golden detail, this could have been a little more original.