The best retro football kits are timeless. Some classic football shirts are just remain with you, whether you're a fan of the vintage Adidas stripes across the shoulder or more minimal efforts that predate huge sponsors across your chest.
In fact, often retro shirts are the best football shirts you can buy – new, old or whatever. With both Premier League sides and European giants releasing fresh threads every season – it won't be long before the World Cup shirts are all revealed, either – sometimes the best bet is to delve into the archives of your team for something new.
Best retro football kits and classic football shirts, 2022
AC Milan: classic shirts and retro kits
AC Milan 1994 away shirt
The first Champions League-winning AC Milan side of the modern era were dressed to impress in a plain white shirt with no sponsor. This is the definitive change strip for the Rossonerri and proof that simple is best.
AC Milan 1963 home shirt
Even Pele loves this one. The red and black stripes have become iconic and it was in the early 1960s with a journey to the European Cup final that Milan put their mark on football fashion.
AC Milan 1996 home shirt
The Opal sponsor has become one of the most instantly recognisable ever. For some, this is the ultimate Milanese icon and one synonymous with Football Italia.
AC Milan 1994 home shirt
Another classic sponsor. The Motta sponsor came in just as Van Basten and Gullit were heading out – but this shirt still came during a treble-winning season. Naturally.
AC Milan 1988 home shirt
A late 80s edition of a classic, this top became the icon of a burgeoning empire in northern Italy. The collar, the tank icon in the sponsor and the Italian flag crest are all neat little details, don't you think?
Ajax: classic shirts and retro kits
Ajax 1994 away shirt
The 1994/95 away shirt from Ajax has become a classic – partly for its intricate design but also for the fact that it was the last shirt that the Amsterdammers conquered Europe wearing. This top is not officially licensed but there are occasionally shirts that crop up on Ebay – and that's the best place to find it.
Argentina: classic shirts and retro kits
Argentina 1986 home shirt
Sky blue and white stripes are synonymous with Argentina. This is one of the nicest shirts in international and in the mid-1980s, Diego Maradona lifted this modest nation higher than ever. The jersey he donned is still iconic.
Argentina 1986 away shirt
Admit it: you can only this subtly-striped beauty of a kit shimmering in the Mexican sun as Maradona destroyed England with nastiness and brilliance. It's become a national symbol back in Argentina.
Arsenal: classic shirts and retro kits
Arsenal 1970s home shirt
These might be the most famous white sleeves in the whole of football. Retro Arsenal shirts are some of the distinctive in the game and as the club won the Double in the 1970s, they established themselves as having a winning look to match.
Arsenal 1970s away shirt
Arsenal originally wore a navy away shirt – but when that clashed too much with the referee's traditional black, the Gunners switched up to yellow. In 1971, they capped this beautiful shade off on a Sunday day at Wembley, winning the FA Cup.
Arsenal 1993 away shirt
Since becoming kit manufacturer for the Gunners again in the 2010s, Adidas have revelled in the 1990s. This particular remake is an update of the away top that Wrighty and co. stormed opposition forces in – and as close as they've ever come to wearing a sash.
Arsenal 1991 "Bruised Banana" away shirt
The loud, proud away shirt that Adidas gave Arsenal fans in the early 1990s has been ranked as one of the best and one of the worst of all time. In time, it's become a must-have for Gunners – and though the last remake of this beauty is completely sold out, you can still find "Bruised banana" tops all over Ebay.
Arsenal 1985 home shirt
To commemorate a century of Arsenal, Umbro's home shirt for 1985/86 was suitably classic with a lovely embellished canon. This, for many, is the ultimate Arsenal home shirt.
Arsenal 1982 away shirt
Arsenal experimented with a mint top during Unai Emery's sole full season in charge – that aside, this is the only green shirt that the Gunners have ever worn. How can one club have so many stunning shirts?
Arsenal 1994 away shirt
Lightning bolts have come to be synonymous with Arsenal. In the 1990s, Nike brought the image to many a Gunners top – and this might be the best one. If you're lucky, you can find it online, still.
Arsenal 2001 away shirt
The Gunners went for gold in 2001, as Arsene Wenger completed his second Double. These tops can still be found on Ebay with Sega as the sponsor or more rarely, O2.
Arsenal 2002 away shirt
The first Arsenal away shirt with the current badge, this thing looked like it had dropped from space when it arrived – Henry and co. played like they were out of this world wearing it.
Arsenal 2002 home shirt
The Invincible shirt. It's a piece of Premier League history and a must-have for every Gooner.
Arsenal 2003 away shirt
The brightest, most brilliant yellow top that Arsenal ever wore, inspired by the 1971 Double-winners. That's Thierry Henry mimicking Charlie George's FA Cup-winning celebration, by the way.
Arsenal 2005 home shirt
The final salute to Highbury was made in redcurrant – it's a one-of-a-kind piece of memorabilia and something that every Arsenal fan should own.
Arsenal 2019 away shirt
The remodel of the bruised banana is arguably an upgrade. This is a modern classic and one of the best-selling Premier League tops of recent memory.
Aston Villa: classic shirts and retro kits
Aston Villa 1996 home shirt
For fans of a certain age, this is the Aston Villa shirt – and that sponsor is just perfect for the club, right? The little lion insignia printed all over the top is a classy touch, as are the gold flourishes.
Aston Villa 1994 away shirt
One of the greatest-ever Premier League sponsors. Red, green and black stripes just shouldn't work – but this shirt is one of the all-time great away jerseys in English football.
Aston Villa 1994 home shirt
Like the green, black and red? You'll love the home. The thick pinstripes were a staple of the 1990s and the Muller sponsor is one of the finest that Villa have ever had.
Aston Villa 1990 home shirt
An all-over pattern that recalls a time of Euro 88 and Italia 90, this top is unmistakeable Villa. The collar is very nice indeed and the blue sleeves are wonderful.
Aston Villa 1988 home shirt
Hummel dished out a few of these kits – most notably one to Southampton and one to the Denmark national side. But the Aston Villa version is one of the nicest in the archives and something completely different to most of the Midlanders' tops.
Aston Villa 1982 home shirt
Villa wore white when they won the European Cup – a crying shame because the 1982 home shirt is one of the most beautiful you will ever come across. The central badge is iconic, too.
Barcelona: classic shirts and retro kits
Barcelona 1974 away shirt
Yellow has always been a prominent away colour for Barcelona and the away kit that Johan Cruyff wore for the club is still one of the most iconic. The Blaugrana sash looks absolutely beautiful.
Barcelona 1982 home shirt
When you think of Barcelona, you think of the superstars and there have been few bigger than Diego Maradona. The shirt that Deadly Diego donned for the Catalan outfit is one of the most simplistic in their history – but why mess with genius?
Barcelona 1992 away shirt
The first time that Barça conquered Europe, they did so in orange. The shirt from 1992's triumph over Sampdoria is masterful, with red on one sleeve and blue on the other.
Barcelona 1992 home shirt
Later referenced in Nike tops, the 1992 home shirt comes complete with colour and two-tone material that looks oh-so-1990s. The badge is vintage, too.
Barcelona 1997 away shirt
Later referenced by Nike with a beautiful prematch shirt (opens in new tab), this Kappa kit was worn against PSG as Barcelona won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1997 under the management of Bobby Robson. The colour is glorious and the pattern is intricate.
Barcelona 1994 home shirt
The Kappa shirt that R9 dazzled in at Camp Nou. This shirt brings all those 90s memories flooding back, as Barça won three trophies in Ronaldo's sole season in Catalonia.
Barcelona 1999 Centenary home shirt
One of the most unique special edition shirts ever produced, Barça's centenary shirt is a work of art. It's never been licensed for remake but Ebay is awash with the real thing – get bidding to own a piece of history.
Bayern Munich: classic shirts and retro kits
Bayern Munich 1985 home shirt
Back in the 1970s and 80s, German sides kept their strips simple. The Bayern Munich efforts of the time are nothing but plain red – and they look classic.
Bayern Munich 1997 away shirt
The late 90s Bayern top that combined navy blue with a red horizontal hoop has never been remade or reworked – because why change something perfect? But this shirt is still one of the most iconic football shirts of an era and it crops up on Ebay frequently.
Boca Juniors: classic shirts and retro kits
Boca Juniors 1995 home shirt
Legend has it that Boca got their shirt colours from incoming ships that were draped in Swedish flags. This top from 1995 – which had both Parmalat as the sponsor and the iconic Quilmes – is the quintessential Xeneizes jersey, though they're hard to find. Ebay is your best bet…
Borussia Dortmund: classic shirts and retro kits
Borussia Dortmund 1997 home shirt
In 1997, Borussia Dortmund stunned Juventus to become champions of Europe. They did it in style, too – literally, wearing a shirt that would become hipsters' favourites for decades to come. These tops are hard to find these days but you're best off looking on Ebay.
Brazil: classic shirts and retro kits
Brazil 1970 home shirt
Easily the most famous yellow football shirt the world has ever known. 1970 was the first time that many watched the World Cup in colour, as one of the greatest-ever sides strolled to victory – wearing the most iconic of bright shades in the process.
Brazil 1970 away shirt
The Brazil change strip from 1970 is just as beautiful, just as simple. It's not often that the Selecao get to wear blue at a World Cup but this is one of the nicest away shirts you will ever see.
Brazil 1949 away shirt
Before the Brazilians wore yellow, they donned white. It was only after a horrific 1950 World Cup that the new colours came in – but this remake shirt is a fabulous nod to the past.
Brazil 1994 home shirt
One of the most instantly recognisable football shirts of the 1990s, the top of the 1994 world champions featured the badge plastered all over – and though there hasn't been a remake, you can still see it crop up on Ebay.
Brazil 2002 home shirt
The last time the Selecao ruled the world. This was easily the nicest of Nike's 2002 World Cup template and these shirts appear every now and then on Ebay.
Celtic: classic shirts and retro kits
Celtic 1967 home shirt
Celtic were the first British side to win the European Cup in 1967, cementing this colour scheme into the very fabric of footballing folklore. It's still a fantastic look today.
Celtic 1988 home shirt
A centenary shirt from the late 1980s, this jersey integrated diamond patterns across it while retaining the classic look of previous efforts.
Celtic 1996 home shirt
A classic from 1996, this retro top has the word "Celtic" written across it in a suitably, well, Celtic font. It's one that's remembered fondly from fans of the time.
Chelsea: classic shirts and retro kits
Chelsea 1970 home shirt
The quintessential classic Chelsea kit, to some. The early 70s crew wore a plain blue shirt with an elegant crest – and it was topped off with an FA Cup win to boot.
Chelsea 1984 home shirt
Hoops are part of the Chelsea shirt story and in the mid-1980s, the Blues donned this lovely get-up. You can buy it these days, too.
Chelsea 1994 away shirt
One of the most talked-about retro shirts ever that Nike themselves have referenced in a recent shirt, this grey/orange effort of the mid-90s has become iconic. It's still around in remakes, too…
Chelsea 1997 home shirt
Another FA Cup win, another classic Chelsea shirt with white and yellow detailing. This one has the lion badge emblazoned across the body – as all good 90s kits should.
Chelsea 1998 away shirt
One of the greatest-ever away kits, not just of Chelsea but anyone. Autoglass took over the Coors sponsor halfway through the shirt's lifecycle.
Chelsea 2000 home shirt
The last FA Cup winners at Wembley, this shirt was lightly striped and is one of the best home jerseys ever at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea 2005 home shirt
Chelsea's first Premier League title win coincided with this lovely centenary shirt from Umbro. It's still around on Ebay from time to time.
England: classic shirts and retro kits
England 1966 home shirt
Every classic England shirt stems back to this one. The Three Lions may not have worn it in the final but it's still the archetypal white England shirt.
England 1966 away shirt
The only red shirt that's ever won the World Cup. It might just be the most famous red shirt in the whole of football – remakes are always going to be made of this one.
England 1982 home shirt
The Admiral top from 1982 was incredibly distinct and though it wasn't a vintage World Cup for the Three Lions, it was certainly a vintage home jersey.
England 1982 away shirt
If you like the Admiral home, you'll love the Admiral away. England's red away shirts are world-famous and this is one of their finest of all time.
England 1990 home shirt
Memories of a sobbing Gazza, the dulcet tones of tenors and David Platt's thunderbolt are all stitched into this beautiful remake… well, metaphorically.
England 1990 third shirt
A shirt that never got an outing at a tournament but still one that's become a cult favourite – perhaps aided by its appearance in the World In Motion video. You've got to hold and give…
England 1992 third shirt
Blue has always been a prominent colour for England – and this shirt is one that captured imagination in the early 1990s. It still comes up for sale on Ebay.