Chelsea defend pricing of new kit after offering £90 premium version
Chelsea have defended the cost of the premium version of their 2016/17 kit after it was made available for pre-order at £90.
Eden Hazard and Ruben Loftus-Cheek launched the Barclays Premier League club's new kit on Facebook on Wednesday, with two versions of the shirt being made available to buy.
Standard replica jerseys will cost from £55 for adults and £45 for children and, for the first time, Chelsea will now also offer an enhanced version called the 'Adi Zero' for £90.
Should Chelsea fans want to add a player's name and number as well as the Premier League logo on the sleeve for any of the new shirts, there would be an additional printing price of £16.95.
Commenting on the new strip, a Chelsea spokesman said: "There are people who want to buy the more expensive authentic version and we are happy to cater for that market but, to be clear, Chelsea FC are selling the main replica shirt for £55 for adults, and from £45 for children, which is in line with other leading European clubs.
"Ninety-nine per cent of the Chelsea shirts that will be on sale in the UK will be the replica version."
Official Chelsea shorts for 2016/2017 will retail at £25, with socks at £13.
There was a largely negative reaction on social media following Wednesday's launch, with former England international Stan Collymore tweeting that the pricing of the £90 shirt was: "Absolute madness. Pure greed."
It is not the first time such prices have been charged for 'authentic' jerseys; England offered a £90 'match shirt' ahead of the 2014 World Cup, and in March this year launched a special Nike Vapour version ahead of Euro 2016, which offers the same engineered fit as players' professional kit, and retails on the Football Association's England store website also at £90. The standard version of the England shirt costs £60.
:: Here, Press Association Sport takes a how Chelsea's new prices compare to some 2015/2016 Premier League replica kit currently available at other other clubs' online stores **
ARSENAL (£116) - m en's home shirt (£55), name, number plus Premier League badge (£24), shorts (£25), socks (£12)
MANCHESTER UNITED (£114) - men's home shirt (£60), name, number plus Premier League badge (£17), shorts (£25), socks (£12)
LIVERPOOL (£108) - men's home shirt (£50), name, number plus Premier League badge (£21), shorts (£25), socks (£12)
LEICESTER - As for the newly crowned champions.. . well, the online club shop says "sorry, there were no products found in your search criteria". Guess there must have been a last-minute rush.
** highest price listed, not including any current sale discount offers. Figures rounded up.