Shamrock Rovers Football Shirts – A (Very) Brief History

Here are a selection of Shamrock Rovers home match worn shirts currently in the collection. First up is a classic early 1980s Glenmalure Park era jersey made by O’Neills Sportswear and featuring the sponsorship of Lifestyle Sports. A extremely simple design that veered from the norm with the introduction of white sleeves as opposed to the regular hoops that had been used for many seasons.

Shamrock Rovers, 1982-83

Shamrock Rovers, 1982-83

This Adidas jersey was swapped with a BP Honved player and used in the away leg of their match in 1985. This jersey was used during one of the clubs golden period where they couldn’t stop winning the title! This jersey was made in Ireland and features a simple hoops design with classic numbering and trefoil on the front, and again featuring the Lifestyle logo.

Fran Hitchcock or Noel Larkin, Shamrock Rovers vs Honved Budapest, 1985

Fran Hitchcock or Noel Larkin, Shamrock Rovers vs Honved Budapest, 1985

 

The jersey worn in 1992-94 was made by UK firm Matchwinner and is very much a product of it’s time. Much bigger, baggier and busier in terms of design. This involved the watermarking of rovers and shamrocks into the classic hoops. Sponsorship was Whirlpool with the addition of logos on the sleeves. In 1994 the National League patches were added.

Derek McGrath, Shamrock Rovers 1992-93

Derek McGrath, Shamrock Rovers 1992-93

This 1998 shirts was produced by Umbro and again is a large fitting top, and featured design flourishes in the hoops, collar and neckline. Sponsorship was by hardware chain Woodies DIY and this was a fixture on the front for many seasons. Often used with and without the Harp Lager National League patches.

Brian Morrisroe, Shamrock Rovers, 1998

Brian Morrisroe, Shamrock Rovers, 1998

This shirt was worn in the 2010 FAI Cup Final vs Sligo Rovers, which unfortunately they lost on penalties. A very effective design by Umbro, simplified designed working well and coinciding with a period where they excelled in Europe and in the league. Features match embroidery, FAI Cup patches on the sleeve and champions scroll under the club crest.

Stephen Rice, FAI Cup Final 2010, Shamrock Rovers vs Sligo Rovers

Stephen Rice, FAI Cup Final 2010, Shamrock Rovers vs Sligo Rovers

Thomas Ravelli Sweden vs Scotland 1981

Thomas Ravelli, Sweden vs Scotland, 1981

Thomas Ravelli, Sweden vs Scotland, 1981

A rather unusual goalkeeper shirt that research reveals was worn by Swedish legendary net minder Thomas Ravelli in the World Cup Qualifier vs Scotland in Hampden Park, Glasgow 09/09/81 (see match photo below). Even though it was badged Adidas, it also has the Cup Star label, and featured a rather fetching one piece design incorporating an under carriage. This was introduced to stop the shirt slipping out of his shorts while he performed his customary acrobatic leaps. This innovation was offered to various goalies in that period, including Peter Shilton, but safe to say it never really took off.

09/09/81 WORLD CUP QUALIFIER SCOTLAND V SWEDEN (2-0) HAMPDEN – GLASGOW Scotland’s Asa Hartford (left) is dispossessed by goalkeeper Thomas Ravelli

New York Cosmos Wim Rijsbergen – Game Worn Jersey

Wim Rijsbergen, New York Cosmos Football Shirt, 1980

Wim Rijsbergen, New York Cosmos Football Shirt, 1980

 

My first featured football shirt is this 1980 New York Cosmos beauty that was worn by former Dutch international footballer Wim Rijsbergen. One of the best designed shirts in my collection, and why not, Ralph Lauren had a hand in it with each kit reputably costing 300 dollars to produce.

There is a lot of interest in the New York Cosmos in the last while. The original team folded with the demise of the NASL in the mid 1980s but Eric Cantona has gotten involved and they hope to enter the MLS in the near future. For those who want to find out more about this iconic team, I recommend the fantastic book and movie ‘Once In A Lifetime‘.

This football shirt is from the NASL era when they were more akin to a rock group then a football team. Huge crowds would witness Pele, Beckenbaur, Carlos Alberto and many world stars strut their stuff. Wim Rijsbergen was one of the supporting players but a Dutch international with 28 caps, who played with the likes of Cryuff and Neeskens.

For more on Wim’s time in the NASL, check out his page here on the fantastic nasljersies website, which has more stats then you can shake a stick at.

Cosmos80

New York Cosmos, 1980 image courtesy www.nasljerseys.com