Arsenal Kits – The Best & Worst

Arsenal Kits – The Best & Worst

It was 88 years this week that Arsenal, under the guidance of the outrageously influential Herbert Chapman, introduced a new kit design featuring a red body with white sleeves and white shorts. The club has never looked back and the design is now indisputably one of the most recognisable on the planet. 

Over the years the Arsenal faithful have been treated to some of English football’s greatest kits, both home and away. But it simply wouldn’t be Arsenal without the highs and the lows. So, with that in mind, we’ve gathered some of the very best and worst kits the gunners have ever donned...


The Best





There are people out there who steadfastly cling to the notion that this is an ugly shirt. There are also lots of people who complain to OFCOM when they see something they don't like on the telly. I’m not saying there is a significant crossover between these groups of people, but I'm not not saying it. Sure, it’s a lot, and the designers have played a risky game but frankly it’s a game they have won. Any more garish and it wouldn't have worked, any less and it wouldn't have gained such an iconic status. Let’s just say there’s a reason the tribute collection crashed the website last year. 


ADIDAS 92-94 (H)



Never had an Arsenal home shirt seen so much black on it before, and while the black and red combo can stray dangerously close to Dennis the menace territory, this really works. The black, wing like pattern on the sleeves really make the colours pop and a centralised badge is always welcome.


NIKE 94-96 (H)



The Arsenal players seemingly had the option to go with or without a collar for this one. Ian Wright was more of a collar off guy and while Ian Wright rarely misses, its collar on for me. Sure that scratchy polyester collar shaped nightmare may not have been much fun to play in but by god it looked good. In terms of the overall design it’s just a lot of fun. Sublimated lightning bolts and Gothic font, why the hell not?


1967-78 (H)



Stuck around for over a decade and with good reason. Clean, crisp and iconic. The only design feature on the otherwise minimalist red and white shirt was the introduction of a small cannon on the chest, a tasteful nod to the sides past.


ADIDAS 19/20 (H)



After 25 years away Adidas sure made an impressive comeback with their 2019/20 home kit. It's hard to pin down why exactly the design, a nod to the one used from 1988 to 1990, is just so good. At the end of the day, it's in detail. The thickness of the black lines, the redness of the red. It all works.


1977/78 (A)



The bigger the cannon, the better the shirt. It’s a simple enough concept and really, there’s not much more to this shirt's inclusion in this list than that. Though a lovely, deep yellow base colour with contrasting 70’s collar certainly doesn't hurt the overall effect. Once again the beauty of centralising a design feature is highlighted and yeah, nice shirt that. 

* The 05/06 ‘redcurrant’ kit was obviously very nice also. Even if it is entirely unclear what historical kit it was supposedly a nod to.


The Worst


PUMA 14/15 (Third)



Undoubtedly the ugliest kit in Arsenal’s modern history. Blue, blue and lime green. A room full of the finest creative minds of the 21st century would have struggled to come up with something nice based on that colour pallet. Puma unveiled a monstrosity.


PUMA 15/16 (H)



Hard to pick a standout stinker from Puma’s home shirt offerings but it doesn't get much worse than this. Tight in all the wrong places, a godawful collar and white sleeves all the way up to ya neck. Arsenal’s red and white has never looked so bad.


UMBRO 1982-1983 (A)



Is it inherently the ugliest thing in the world? No. But if you're gonna break a hundred years of tradition it better be for a good reason and this incredibly shiny number ain't it.The first and last green outfield kit in the side's history is best left in the past.


PUMA 2014/15 (A)



Featuring a neckline that looks lifted straight from the wardrobe of a German DJ, this is a staggering unflattering kit. Just an absolute clingy nightmare from top to bottom that really paved the way for the rest of the Puma years. Nice socks at least.


Words by Andy Gallagher


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