Man U-facturing Consent

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What you see above is Manchester United’s new away kit. I was sorely tempted to crop the photo just below the knees, so as to avoid the annoying logo creep on the socks, but that would have denied you the full miserable effect, so I left it in. Further details here.

We’re still a bit short-handed today, as John’s computer is still on the blink and Phil’s busy with family stuff. As for me, later today I’ll be heading upstate, where I’ll be starting a four-day butchery training course tomorrow. With a bit of luck, I should even come back with all ten fingers. ”” Paul

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by Rick Pearson


Don’t you hate it when politicians make baseball analogies…

7-16-11 s-Two singles ALT

And, of course, your full-size version.

56 comments to Man U-facturing Consent

  • Tim | July 16, 2011 at 9:37 am |


    Manchester city socks again are right up your alley(at least the part that shows)

  • LI Phil | July 16, 2011 at 9:43 am |

    gonna be running out for the day/weekend soon, but i just wanted to make sure i wished Tim E. O’B a happy 24th birthday before i left

    everyone have a great weekend

    • Tim E. O'B | July 16, 2011 at 10:05 am |

      Thanks Phil!

      And while I’m going to a Cubs game (Boo! Gross!) today, I’ll be wearing White Sannies (Yay Sox!) and a Blackhawks T-Shirt.

      I was always taught, if you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all – hence the ‘Hawks shirt.

      • Jim Vilk | July 16, 2011 at 11:40 am |

        Happy Birthday, young man!

        And have a peaceful weekend, Phil.

      • Andrew Seagraves | July 17, 2011 at 12:49 am |

        Happy Birthday, Tim!

  • ben_g | July 16, 2011 at 9:54 am |

    I like the design and the stripes a lot, but not the color. Blue is Chelski’s color, not United.

    • Tim | July 16, 2011 at 9:57 am |

      Every team wears every color in soccer. Yes Chelsea wear Royal Blue, but they also have worn black, and yellow and even Red on their home shirts. Its like people saying City can’t wear a red kit even though they have been wearing Red away shirts for nearly 50 years. Its just a shirt

      • Keith | July 16, 2011 at 12:50 pm |

        Just a shirt? The whole point of this blog is that it isn’t just a shirt. Maybe they should just play shirts and skins. Color is important because it represents the team’s brand. There needs to be some consistency for casual fan when they turn on the TV. In the past 10 years United has had 3 different sponsors. I’d rather have the colors be the same for each team.

        • The Jeff | July 16, 2011 at 1:05 pm |

          Soccer doesn’t do color consistency, apparently. I don’t really get that one either. Team X is red & white, unless they’re playing another team that’s red & yellow… then they wear blue…or green…or any other color that isn’t red & white. I mean…what? Pick 2 main colors, wear one or the other. It’s simple. But for whatever reason they don’t/won’t do that.

        • johnj | July 16, 2011 at 1:53 pm |

          I don’t think you’re paing enough attention then… Most (if not all) soccer team have two main colors. They have a “home” kit which they will wear for all home matches and any away match in which the other team’s home kit is not the same color

          In this case, they will wear their change kit (not away, change). While the colors of the change kit seem random, most teams have wore the same color change for years (man u-blue, chelsea-yellow, etc.)

          If anything, the EPL is the portrait of consistency, with teams like Man United having not changed their colors in over 100 years

      • RS | July 16, 2011 at 4:38 pm |

        An analogy . And yes, it’s the same thing.

    • johnj | July 16, 2011 at 10:57 am |

      its really not odd for United’s change kit to include blue….


      Newtown Heath may have worn blue shorts,socks (?) but I’m not sure that should count

      Interesting note: the 1911-1912 kits had blue stipes (horizontal), I’m assuming the hoops are and ode to that

      • George Chilvers | July 17, 2011 at 5:37 am |

        Don’t fully accept that United’s second choice kits have been blue. Because United have so many kits (cynically commercial – sell more replicas) they have had a wide variety over the years.

        If you haven’t heard the tale however the best excuse ever was with the 1995/1996 grey kit. Away to Southampton they were losing at half-time and changed kit in the second half. The reason? Alex Ferguson (manager) said “they couldn’t see each other!!”

  • Brian | July 16, 2011 at 10:05 am |

    Oh please, save your outrage for the new Barcelona shirts, purchased by the Qatar Foundation just like the 2022 World Cup.

    • Jim Vilk | July 16, 2011 at 12:38 pm |

      I have plenty saved up for that…

  • DJ | July 16, 2011 at 10:08 am |
  • Conor | July 16, 2011 at 10:43 am |

    Guys, seriously, we need to move on from complaining about Nike putting the swoosh everywhere. I get that you don’t like it, but the fact is they market very, very aggressively.

    That’s how it is, so please move on and talk about relevant things instead of whining every other sentence about “The Lifestyle” and “The Mark of the Beast.”

    Seriously, it gets old.

    • Paul Lukas | July 16, 2011 at 10:48 am |

      I have a pretty simple approach: If I think something sucks, I say it sucks.

      If that works for you, great; if not, that’s fine too. It’s a big internet out there.

      • johnj | July 16, 2011 at 11:03 am |

        I usually dont like to jump in on these discussions, although I must admit, I was upset by this particular swooshification for some reason:

        • Ricko | July 16, 2011 at 11:30 am |

          I keep waiting for some university athletic director to announce…
          “Fortunately, our non-revenue-producing teams DO have revenue-producing uniforms.”

        • johnj | July 16, 2011 at 11:51 am |

          “Everyone please rise for the singing of our alma mater, brought to you by Wells Fargo. We love this school, you can bank on it”

    • Jim Vilk | July 16, 2011 at 12:25 pm |

      Unlike Paul, I can live with one – ONE – makers mark on a uniform. But when the ratio of maker’s marks to team logos is 2:1 or higher, there’s a problem. It goes past aggressive marketing and straight into bludgeoning.

      You really want to make an impact, especially in soccer? See these things? Why don’t the swooshkateers just say, “In exchange for our boatload of cash, we want our logo on these boards all game long.”

      Of course, part of this is soccer’s fault by insisting on the small team logos. “But it’s the traditional look,” you say. Yes, it is, but the traditional look also included no ads. Once ads crept onto the scene, teams should have made their logos bigger.

      Speaking of ads, I still don’t get how this is considered to be more respectable than this in the futbol world.

      • The Jeff | July 16, 2011 at 12:36 pm |

        Speaking of ads, I still don’t get how this is considered to be more respectable than this in the futbol world.


        Because *anyone* can play soccer. So, turning your uniform into a billboard is a sign that your team is actually talented, and not just a random group of guys. I guess.

        Of course, playing in a league with “soccer” in it’s name and calling your team a “football club” is pretty stupid too. You’re not a football club, you’re a soccer team, you dolts.

        • Jim Vilk | July 16, 2011 at 12:41 pm |

          Uh, soccer had the term “football” first, The.

          Football on these shores should be called Gridiron, or American Rugby, or Concussionball, or something else, but for a sport where the guys who actually put a foot to the ball are held in such disdain, “Football” seems odd.

        • The Jeff | July 16, 2011 at 12:55 pm |

          Yeah, the sport of American Football is kinda poorly named… but it is what it is. It’s kinda like tennis and racquetball being two different things.

          The North American reality is that Toronto’s “football club” is the Argonauts.

        • Richard Gadsden | July 16, 2011 at 5:03 pm |

          Football because you play it while standing on your feet, as opposed to riding a horse.

          [It was the game played by “The Foot” – which is military-ese for non-cavalry]

        • RS | July 16, 2011 at 8:59 pm |

          Regardless of whether or not you want to call it football or soccer, a Major League Soccer team arbitrarily tacking “FC” onto their name is incredibly stupid.

      • johnj | July 16, 2011 at 1:43 pm |

        But by putting it on the jerseys that fans buy and wear, the swooch goes futher than the pitch

        … and clarification on the name, soccer is not an american term, it comes from England and is short for as-SOC-iation. We (and other countries where alternative ‘footballs’ is prominant) took the name because its easier to differentiate

        • cam | July 16, 2011 at 2:00 pm |

          Right, it was called soccer before it was called football. Not enough people know that and are more interested in being snobs by saying, “oh, I follow football, not soccer.”

        • Jeff P | July 16, 2011 at 4:30 pm |

          Actually, it was Association Football, which distinguished itself from rugby in 1863 when they created standard rules, banning, among other things, the use of hands. Prior to that, “football” referred to sports played under all sorts of rules. Rugby was one of those sports, and was equally known as football.

          Soccer was a term for the new Association Football.

          American Football, as a descendant of one of the original English footballs, rugby, has a perfectly valid claim to the name, as does soccer. However, assoc. already had a nice, handy, slang name, so it changed.

        • Jeff P | July 16, 2011 at 4:35 pm |

          Another interesting thing: apparently we can blame 1880’s oxford students for the name. The slang there was to append an ‘ers’ to the end of words- brekkers for breakfast, for example. So when you played football, the choice would be between ruggers or soccer, ruggers of course being rugby rules and soccer being assoc. rules.

        • Skycat | July 16, 2011 at 8:22 pm |

          Could it be we call it football because it’s played with a … football?

  • Ryan | July 16, 2011 at 11:51 am |

    Not a big fan of this change kit. My favorites in recent years were 06-07 (white shirt with gold & black trim, black shorts, white & black socks) and 08-09 (white shirt with blue trim, blue shorts, white socks). The shirts with the chevron in recent years were hideous, and while last year’s kit wasn’t awesome, it was much less of an eyesore than this new one will probably be.

    • johnj | July 16, 2011 at 12:04 pm |

      is it bad for me to say I loved the 94-96 home kits with the old trafford print in the background?

  • Aaron Rzadczynski | July 16, 2011 at 1:01 pm |

    Michael Jordan

  • eli | July 16, 2011 at 3:16 pm |

    Paul where will you attend the butchering classes, I live in poughkeepsie and I am always curious on what I am missing out on locally….

  • Pat | July 16, 2011 at 5:49 pm |

    I am a huge soccer/football/futbol fan. I will say that while socially acceptible for soccer teams to have sponsors on the front of their unis it’s debatable as to whether or not is either “right” or “aesthetically pleasing”. Now having grown up in an era where it was socially acceptable for teams to have the sponsors on the front of their unis when a team doesn’t have a sponsor (like Colorado, Columbus, or Sporting KC in the MLS) it kinda looks weird to me. Even though FC Dallas and the Chicago Fire don’t have sponsors they at least have a team name. However, with national teams the other way around is weird. To complain about Nike and call them agressive is a bit of an overstatement considering Adidas placement of the three stripes as well as a logo on everything. They don’t show it but on the back of those Man U socks is a small Man U devil logo as well as the swooshes on the front which would put them even as far as Nike to Manchester United logo ratio. Chelsea however have 3 to 1 Adidas logo/three stripes to Chelsea logos on the top and shorts and 2 to 1 on the socks.
    You can see an Adidas logo on the back of the sock in the you tube clip screen grab on the bottom of that page.
    I’m totally fine with Paul calling out Nike on their over-aggresiveness. In fact, since I’ve started frequenting this site I have become less pro-Nike because of Paul pointing it out. I’m glad there is someone on the interwebs with a significant following that is pointing out some of the ridiculous things they are doing. However, I wouldn’t say that without saying that I believe that all uni-manufacturers are pretty much as guilty as Nike, including Adidas, Puma, Reebok(whom I like to call diet Adidas) , Majestic and the many others. Well maybe not Majestic. I also realize that as I’m typing this I’m wearing a Portland Timbers “Shirsey” with three stripe sleeves, an Adidas logo on the right chest, an Alaska Airlines sponsor on the front and one lonely Portland Timbers logo on the left chest. As consumers of sport whether we like it or not in order to support our teams we will end up succumbing to the world of logo creep and sponsorship.

  • Chris from Carver | July 16, 2011 at 6:21 pm |

    Here’s a picture of Ron Paul not only wearing an Astros Tequilla Sunrise jersey and stirrups, but FNOB to boot.

  • Damon B | July 16, 2011 at 6:41 pm |

    Well said Pat. It is unfortunate to have an extreme amount of logo creep, however it is the world we live in. My alma mater (Texas Tech) has plenty of useless stripes and piping on their football uniforms, and as much as I don’t like them, I will have to live with it. My favorite soccer team (Newcastle United) can’t seem to make a reasonable white/black vertically striped shirt. I have to deal with it. In the grand scheme of things, it is a small hastle. I still support those under the silly shirt/jersey designs.

  • Brian K | July 16, 2011 at 7:23 pm |

    Hey Paul,

    I just noticed this the other day and am not sure if anyone else has said anything (too lazy to look back at previous comments and entries). To me it looks like the Derek Jeter 3000 hits logo (stupid marketing I might add) reminds me of the Mets last year at the old Shea logo. Were they made by the same person?

  • JamesP. | July 16, 2011 at 7:28 pm |

    Astros catcher, Humberto Quintero, is wearing a Sunshine Kids Foundation pin on his uniform:

    Craig Biggio used to wear that pin on his cap during games. I wonder how long till Bob Watson fines Q for having that pin on his uni…

    • JamesP. | July 16, 2011 at 8:23 pm |

      And the pin was gone by the 4th…

  • Scott Bennett | July 16, 2011 at 8:20 pm |

    Bad news kids; THIS ISN’T LOGO CREEP. In order for it to be creep, it would have to be more than before. It isn’t. All parts of the kit have been logo-ed for decades. Saying , “Yeah, but this kit is new” or “If I think it sucks I say it sucks” is the equivalent of me posting, “Hey, Pittsburgh Steelers have only one helmet sticker!”

    Here’s a photo of the Aberdeen football club 1985/6:

    You have three stripes everywhere, PLUS trefoils on shirts and shorts PLUS trefoils on socks (inside and outside. TWICE as many logos as you’ve shown off today).

    In 1979/80, Aberdeen didn’t have trefiols on the socks, but they had three stripes on the collar as well as sleeves, socks, and shorts:

    Here’s a picture of Andy Gray when he played for Wolves (79-83). If you guessed they wore UMBRO kits, you’d be right!

    Here’s another look at the shirt:

    Shorts and socks got the same treatment.

    So, considering this is the group obsessed with the study of athletics aesthetics, and loves to create its own clever lexicon to describe phenomena (i.e. “logo creep”, “Ree-box”), AND since you’ve offered homage to notorious “grammar bully” Noam Chomsky in your title, I suggest you get your facts straight. This isn’t logo creep, it’s logo stasis.


    • Shane | July 18, 2011 at 4:03 pm |

      Diagree here, Scott.

      I have several United jerseys from throughout the Nike tenure. The 11/12 home shirt has a MUCH larger swoosh than other shirts I’ve got (notably the 03 away and 08 home).

  • Kevin W. | July 16, 2011 at 10:22 pm |

    Paul, with all due respect, you give Nike far too much grief when it comes to soccer. Yes, there is logo creep, but it could be much worse, by which I mean it could be Adidas. Nike, by far, makes much better kits than Adidas does and they don’t slap those three stripes on every inch of their kits.

    • Kevin W. | July 16, 2011 at 10:24 pm |

      Speaking of Adidas uniforms, after looking at the Sounders’ all-neon monstrosities, I’m starting to wonder if Phil Knight is moonlighting as an Adidas employee. That kit is like a Nike wet dream.

  • odessasteps | July 16, 2011 at 10:41 pm |

    odd kits in the argentina/uruguay copa match today. I heard someone say (can’t verify now) that since teams wear similar colors (light blue), the change kits today were not their usual ones.

  • BurghFan | July 16, 2011 at 10:49 pm |

    Looks like the Tigers and White Sox saluted the Negro Leagues in Detroit today.

    • scott | July 17, 2011 at 9:47 am |

      Good looking game. The White Sox showed how a team should wear dark jerseys.

  • Pat | July 16, 2011 at 10:58 pm |

    Watching Real Madrid and LA Galaxy play in a friendly on ESPN2 and LA is wearing their third unis that everyone was saying were black. When you see the light reflect on them
    It’s pretty obvious that they’re a dark navy blue.

    • Lew Holst | July 16, 2011 at 11:10 pm |

      And amazingly the US flag patches still look abysmal.

    • Rob H. | July 17, 2011 at 1:20 am |

      More obvious than the Yankees? Or less? Or same?

  • DJ | July 16, 2011 at 11:52 pm |

    Argentina wore their change kit (blue shirt, white shorts and socks). Uruguay wore their change shirt (white) and their primary shorts and socks (black).

  • Simply Moono | July 16, 2011 at 11:54 pm |

    Greetings from Slidell, LA. Before the day is out, I want to wish Tim E. O’B a happy birthday. Hope you took pics of the Sox game. See you guys sometime next week.

  • mtjaws | July 17, 2011 at 12:27 am |

    At this point, I expect the uniform manufacturer to put a logo on each part of the uniform. But when it comes to soccer, the one thing that makes their uniforms both ugly and annoying is the giant ad on the chest/stomach area. When I see that, all it looks like is the team name is AON (or whatever company bought that space). The team’s name and logo should have that space, not a tiny unreadable logo near the shoulder.

    The World Cup uniforms don’t have the giant ads, and it looks so much better. Until every team gets rid of them, this will be one of the main reasons why I’ll continue to dislike soccer.