Belfast Telegraph

Fans rage at Nothern Ireland's eye-watering £88 away kit


Northern Ireland's new away kit will evoke memories of the 1982 World Cup finals for fans who are old enough to remember it, but not everything is all white with the supporters.

The smart new look, with a crisp white shirt and green shorts being reminiscent of the famous win over Spain in Valencia 32 years ago, was unveiled yesterday in the window of a Belfast sports retailer and online.

While the style and the colour seem to be an instant hit, one thing is putting off the customers that is is aimed at – the shirt's £52 price tag!

The kit will be available to buy from next Thursday and adults wanting to buy the whole ensemble will have to shell out a massive £88 for the shirt (£52), shorts (£24) and socks (£12).

Even kitting out a child will cost £67 and the home kit, which was launched last November, is priced the same.

Fans took to social network sites to hit out at the huge cost of the new outfit.

One fan said on Twitter: "Just seen the price of the new NI away kit.. £52 absolutely ludicrous!

"Gr8 way to encourage the people of Northern Ireland to support their putting ridiculous prices on merchandise!!"

Another said: "Better than the home, but nothing special. £52 is a rip off for shirts that will only be used for a year!"

One other supporter suggested that he liked neither the look or the price, saying: "£52 each for 2 fairly average shirts that will only be used for a year? Seems like a bit of a rip off?"

The Irish FA's deal with kit manufacturers adidas, which has been running for two years and will expire in 2016, is the biggest ever signed by the association and is believed to be worth over £500,000 a year.

Fans who have expressed their concerns regarding the lifespan of the new kits will be interested to know that the black away kit, which the new one has been brought out to replace, was worn only four times by Michael O'Neill's men.

The first choice green kit was worn seven times by the senior team during a 15-month period following its release before the new one came out last November, in time for the friendly in Turkey.

The white kit is expected to be worn for the first time in next month's friendly against Cyprus in Nicosia.

It remains to be seen how sales of the new shirt go before that game, with other fans saying: "Shame about the price of it #overpriced", "too expensive!!", "do they have payment plans? Very expensive."

One supporter, however, did display the humour that Northern Ireland's Green and White Army are renowned for when he said: "At least now we get hammered in style."

The IFA is holding a launch event at JD Sports, Boucher Crescent, Belfast on Wednesday February 19 (4pm-5.30pm) with players Martin Paterson, Sammy Clingan and goalkeeper coach Maik Taylor in attendance.

Belfast Telegraph


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