NYCFC’s Away Jersey is Revealed and Well-ReceivedNew York City FC pleases fans and neutrals with its more uniquely-designed away kit
by Nick Chavez | Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Perhaps, New York City FC was simply saving the best for last.
Following the seemingly unanimous public disapproval of New York City FC’s home jersey due to its almost identical design to Manchester City’s famous sky-blue home kit, NYCFC has revealed an inaugural season away kit yesterday that is much more unique and “New York”, set to go on sale in early 2015.
Due to this much wiser design considering NYCFC fans’ wishes, it is no surprise that it has, so far, been very well-received by the public, if the responses from several social media platforms are anything to go by.
What appears to be an all-black shirt and shorts, with a sky blue trim and a sparing distribution of orange to be found along the shirt, has been a hit so far to NYCFC fans and even on-looking neutrals.
The orange is a nod to New York City’s Dutch “New Amsterdam” roots, as is the uniquely-slanted, 5 “subtle stripes” running vertically across the torso of the shirt, that elegantly represents New York City’s famous 5 boroughs with a meaningful touch.
It is likely that this more unique, New York-representative design isn’t reactive to the negative uproar against the home jersey unveiling, as one of the original teasers showed the back of a dark jersey, with a sky blue number, very reminiscent to how this jersey looks.
Furthermore, at the press conference of the unveiling of the original sky-blue home jersey, NYCFC CBO Tim Pernetti himself said about the then-yet-to-be-revealed away shirts, “I think it will be an incredible seller in the market and I think it’s going to really connect with New York sports fans.”
Based on this evidence, it seems this was the original design for the away jersey, though it is likely that the club ended up unveiling it much earlier than previously planned, due to screenshots of a digital version of the away jersey shown on the FIFA Ultimate Team app being posted on twitter.
Founding NYCFC fan and Third Rail member Daniel Royster was amongst the first to see this, referred to his own EA account to confirm that this “leak” was indeed real, and then he shared it with NYCFC fans via social media.
Around the same time, a much clearer mock-up based on the design shown in the FIFA “leak” that looked impressively similar to the official away jersey was widely shared on Twitter by @einwindirNYCFC, one of the administrators of popular NYCFC online forum community NYCFCforums.com, and created by in-house designer “Drainyoo.”
It is likely that this leak and the way that it spread virally throughout the internet forced NYCFC’s hand to unceremoniously officially release the kits via Twitter, rather than during MLS jersey week, when it was widely expected to be unveiled, which would’ve likely taken place just before the kick-off of the 2015 MLS season.
It is perhaps for the best, as there was a very palpable sense of disappointment and cynicism following the release of the Manchester City-modeled home kits, and the early release of these very highly-regarded away kits seem to have done much to quell the feelings of dissatisfaction amongst MLS fans.
It is, hopefully, an important lesson learned by City Football Group, or whoever was responsible for designing these inaugural NYCFC shirts — Respect the City of New York and its soccer fans, of whom the majority have been supporting clubs other than Manchester City from all over world for many years, and naturally feel no affection (and sometimes natural, competitively-fueled animosity) to its sister club in England.
Give them something unique, something more New York, and don’t try to so closely copy the brand of Manchester City, giving NYC soccer fans a reason to feel resentful and suspicious when it is both unnecessary and counterproductive.
If City Football Group does that, it will go a long way in engendering the respect and affection Stateside for its global sporting project, and more importantly, for New York City FC.