Few clubs in world football have as rich a modern history in kit culture as German giants Borussia Dortmund.
From the moment Nike brought fluorescent football to the Yellow Wall in the 1990s, BVB have been ahead of their time and at the forefront of new trends, thus their new kit releases always create a buzz and divide opinion.
Puma’s 2020-21 home shirt for Die Schwarzgelben (The Black and Yellows) is no exception.
The reaction on social media has ranged from memes pointing out that the shirts look like something out of Pokemon, those saying it would be better as a training top, and a few brave souls who simply love the electric shock of Puma’s first new Dortmund shirts of the 2020s.
Most seem united behind one aspect, that ugly bloody sponsor logo ruins things.
The high-voltage shirts are the first to feature Borussia’s new sponsors, the German web-services company 1&1 Ionos and it may just be the presence of that big, rude, black box in the middle of the jersey that disturbs our little OCDs the most.
It’s possible that the replacement of previous backers Evonik with the Rhineland-based firm came too late for Puma to weave those buzzing bolts into a coherent pattern, but the placement looks a little like an afterthought and disrupts the flow of what should have been a world-beater.
We’re huge fans of the work Puma are doing this year and in particular the way their top-tier clients like Marseille are receiving imaginative, individually bespoke kits that take a risk and refuse to play it safe.
We also recognise that their comes a tipping-point in our lives when we stop seeing those expressive designs for the statements they are and naturally yearn for what we know from the past.
New Borussia Dortmund kits will always be compared to the Drake Ramberg designed shirts of the 1990s that really put Nike on the map.
Dortmund’s 2020-21 shirts are fresh and modern and maybe carry a little of that same energy, and but for that box, we think these shirts would take their place among the best BVB shirts of the past ten years.
They might just grow on us.
Of course the real magic will occur on the pitch and as always, how we feel about football shirts often depends on the success of the team who wears them.
There’s time for Reus, Sancho and Co to redeem these shirts yet.
🛒 You can shop for this & all this season’s new releases at Kitbag.com. 🛒