Ahead of a new Superliga season, Jimmy Lee returns to take a look and rank all 26 shirts…
Before I moved to Argentina I was told that I would have to choose a football club and I had to pick between River and Boca. I knew nothing about either club, so, I picked River. Why? Because I decided that if I ever bought their shirt, I would prefer to wear red and white instead of blue and yellow. It was that simple.
I moved to Córdoba and not Buenos Aires and became enamoured with Belgrano (for reasons other than just their shirt) and did not become a River supporter. But still to this day I will cheer for River over Boca in the Superclásico because they’re the team I initially picked. Like it or not, the aesthetics of football are important to viewers and fans.
So, let’s rank the current crop of football shirts for the 26 teams that make up the Superliga. Rankings are based on each club’s primary home shirt. Let’s begin.
26. Defensa y Justicia
Yellow and green are not the most aesthetically pleasing colors, and these particular shades of yellow and green are simply put, very ugly. There are three green bands and it seems there only purpose is to provide a darker background for the sponsors to be on. I give full credit to all Halcón fans because this shirt would steer me in the direction of any other club in Buenos Aires.
25. Argentinos Juniors
This shirt is just too busy. Way too many sponsors all doing different things. There seems to be no organization to where each sponsor was placed and how much space they could occupy. At least most the sponsors are all the same red and white colors and match the rest of the shirt, with the exception of the ‘Solo Deportes’ sponsor on the sleeves which are pink, blue, and green and make the shirt even worse than it already is.
Colón has the same problem Argentinos has. They’re trying to cover every square inch of the shirt with sponsors. Red and black are good colors, but another club from the same province has the same colors and shirt design and does it a lot better. The worst part of all has to be the palm trees wrapped around the sleeves. Would look much better on the sleeves of Miami FC’s shirt.
23. Godoy Cruz
Blue and white are great colors. It should be a nice shirt, but for some reason it just isn’t. It would significantly improve if the blue and white stripes were the same width. The sponsor should be placed over the top of the stripes instead of stopping the stripes halfway down the shirt. This should be a very nice looking shirt, but Godoy Cruz really missed the mark.
Another yellow and green shirt, but the colors on this one are much bolder and look better than those of Defensa y Justicia. The highlight of this shirt is the huge ‘Blister Pack’ sponsor on the front. Blister Pack is a service company and technically has nothing to do with actual blisters on your skin, but English is my first language and seeing the word Blister on an already ugly shirt makes it so much worse.
21. San Martín de San Juan
With two teams in the Superliga this season with the name San Martín, at least right on the middle of this shirt it tells you which city this club comes from. This shirt is unique as they are the only club with green and black as the primary colors, but the different widths of the lines are a bit too painful on the eyes.
This shirt is the love child of Colón and San Martín de San Juan. Crazy with the sponsors and a little too wild with stripes. It’s better than both of those clubs, but still not something I would want to walk around town wearing.
Next come three similar white and red stripped shirts in a row. None of them are great, but Unión does it worst of all. Good colors, but why not carry the stripes all the way to the top of the shirt? It is unique, which usually would count for positive points and move it higher up the list. But what makes this shirt unique also ruins it.
18. San Martín de Tucumán
This is the shirt San Martín wore last season while in the B Nacional and I imagine they might release a new kit before they debut in the Superliga, but this is what we currently have to work with. It’s solid. Stripes are the right sizes and not too many sponsors. It just a little plain and is lacking something to make it stand out and shoot it up higher in the rankings.
This is the best of the red and white striped shirts. Overall, it’s a classic and clean look. The lines are the right width, but they stop the stripes in the middle of the shirt to add the sponsor. Just place the sponsor on top of the stripes and this shirt looks much better.
All-white is a classic look for a football kit. The red accents are nice and the alternate shirt is the exact opposite which I always personally enjoy. Which leaves me with one question, why is the primary sponsor on the home shirt blue? Blue is not a club color, as far as I am aware, correct me if I am wrong. Make that sponsor red and this shirt moves up a couple of spots.
There are three shirts with basically the same design but with different color schemes (Tigre, Boca, and Gimnasia). The base color with one single band around the center of the shirt in a secondary color. Of the three clubs, Tigre does it the worst. Red and blue look good together but the red band is just way too thick and covers too much of the shirt.
Like I said about Godoy Cruz, blue and white are nice colors. Overall it is a good shirt, but I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing it, so I won’t say anything else. Let’s move on.
13. Atlético Tucumán
The first of two kits that mimic the national team’s kit, unfortunately for Atlético, the other club does it a lot better. The blue on this shirt is too light and when watching on TV, it blends into the white and makes the shirt look like one solid color. They only have one primary sponsor, which is a plus, but it is the same sponsor half a dozen other clubs have on their shirt, Secco. Any club that has Secco automatically loses a couple of points. For those of you who are unaware, Secco is a local soda brand, and well, Secco is disgusting.
Solid red with a couple of white accents. It’s a very nice shirt. Independiente historically has some of the nicest kits in Argentine football, but this current version is far from their best. However, if I was ranking their retro shirt they released last season, it would take the top spot, that shirt is incredible.
11. Rosario Central
Now we are getting into the cream of the crop. I am very close to loving this shirt. Nike generally makes some of the classiest shirts. These stripes are nice and the minor details of the diagonal stripes inside the yellow stripes is a nice touch. Blue and yellow is a good color combination. There is only one sponsor, but it looks like they took a big sticker and stuck it in the middle of the shirt. An almost perfect shirt is ruined.
This is a nice deep shade of green and the gold accents are good touch. The gold at the front of the collar is a little strange, but doesn’t detract too much from this overall attractive shirt.
9. Newells Old Boys
These shirts are great. I don’t have anything negative to say about them. Good colors, clean design. Overall this is a great shirt. I just like some of the other shirts on this list better. But Newells fans should be proud to sport this one.
8. Boca Juniors
This is one of the most historic and classic shirts in Argentine football. Previous Boca shirts have had a thicker yellow band and a couple of seasons back they put the sponsor beneath the yellow band. This shirt has corrected those mistakes. This is a great shirt, but the ones ahead of it on the list have a bit more to offer. Also, Boca doesn’t have to win everything – two league titles in a row should keep the fans happy.
Hate me if you want for ranking this shirt as high as I did, but in my opinion, celeste (sky blue) is the perfect color. I would have ranked this #1 because well, like I said, it’s perfect, but the input from other people made me move it back down the list to #7. It does have a few too many sponsors, but everything on this shirt is either celeste or white. It’s clean, it’s gorgeous, it’s perfect. It should be #1.
This shirt is similar to both Tigre and Boca, but the club from La Plata does this design best. The band is the perfect width and it goes more over the chest than the stomach area of the shirt. One thing Argentine clubs don’t do well is badge design. Almost all badges are the club’s initials shaped together inside of a crest. But not Gimnasia, their badge is unique and it’s pretty damn cool.
5. Racing Club
Like Atlético Tucumán, this is a mirror image of the Argentine national team shirt, but the blue in this shirt is richer and looks better. These are beautiful colors, but the Kappa logo is ugly. Aldosivi, Belgrano, and Racing all wear Kappa shirts and it is an ugly logo. But unlike Aldosivi and Belgrano, this shirt is not covered with dozens of Kappa logos. One on the chest and one on each sleeve is still too much, but it could be much worse.
4. River Plate
Another classic shirt of Argentine football. The red diagonal stripe, though used by other clubs and countries around the world, belongs to River. Their deal with BBVA ran out and I imagine they will put a sponsor back on this shirt at some point soon, but as it currently stands, it’s a near perfect shirt.
3. San Lorenzo
Clean and classic. Nike. Red and blue. What is there not to like about this shirt? The only thing that would make this shirt better is if it was sponsored by the tourism board for the Vatican City.
Lanús released their new shirt recently which is now being made by Peak Sport. They knocked this design out of the park. Lanús has always stood out because it is the only club with this maroon colour. There is just one sponsor and the white accents on the collar and sleeves are a nice touch. The one thing that keeps this shirt from the top spot is the badge. I’ve never understood what is going on with that badge. Could someone please explain it to me?
1. Vélez Sarsfield
The title spot goes to Vélez. It is clean and simple, yet unique. The “V” band across the chest is perfect. I love the accent designs on the bottom of the sleeves, something that is uniquely Velez. This is a gorgeous shirt. And since I know I would get the white shirt dirty, the alternate shirt is identical but in blue. Well done Vélez. Rumor has it they will be releasing a new shirt soon and Kappa may be making it. Hopefully they don’t ruin it this perfect football shirt.
Jimmy lived in Córdoba, Argentina as a teenager and is still an active Socio for his beloved club, Belgrano. He currently lives in Seattle, WA and loves to write about football when he has a break from work and family. He also runs the Belgrano – English twitter account.