Analysis

Ranked! The 20 worst World Cup kits EVER

Freddy Krueger, Roy Keane and - even scarier - Jorge Campos star in Nick Moore's countdown of the ugliest football strips ever seen at the World Cup

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20. Ivory Coast (2006)

Let’s face it, orange isn’t the new black: it’s a difficult color to pull off, being the general sartorial preserve of American convicts, lollipop ladies, air traffic controllers and members of mad 70s sex cults that might start stabbing each other at any minute. The only football team that have done it with any real verve is Holland, who go all guns blazing with a deep, in-yer-face tangerine.

Blackpool, alas, veer into hi-vis tabard territory, but the Ivory Coast’s tops are more of a mouldy clementine rather than a proud easy peeler. Difficult to rectify, style-wise – but at least they can see each other.

19. England (2006)

Essentially just a white Tee with the whisper of a St George’s cross draped across the shoulder. Almost as dull as the first 90 minutes of the England vs Portugal game.

18. Tunisia (2018)

A top design so lazy that we can’t be bothered writing more than one sentence about it.

17. Tunisia away (1998)

If their entry for this year was quarter-arsed, Tunisia’s ’98 away design was wild and hellish: The Eagles of Carthage looked like they’d been attacked by actual angry eagles – or perhaps Freddy Krueger, with life-ending artery slashes sustained to the shoulders and groin.

16. Slovenia (2010)

It’s hard to quite put your finger on what’s wrong with this, but the odd line graph feels too low, the shades too neutral, and the overall effect somehow a bit too Twenty20 cricket-y. We can see an Australian off-spinner secretly scuffing up a ball in it, and then weeping on television – but it just didn’t suit Aleksandar Radosavljevic.

15. Scotland (1990)

Say what you like about Scotland’s international footballing woes, but they usually look pretty menacing on the pitch in their noble blue. Their away choices have been odder, however – and the Tartan Army’s torrid time at Italia ’90 were worsened by this bizarre purple and yellow horizontal striped fashion calamity, in which they lost to Costa Rica.

=14. Russia away (1994)

After Playing as the USSR at World Cup 1990 and CIS at Euro ’92, it’s no wonder that Russia didn’t know if they were coming or going at USA ’94. Their baffling Reebok away kit - blue with odd flashes of the Ghost of Croatia future defiling the shoulders – was just as confusing.

=14. Russia (2014)

It’s 2018 and having a go at the Russians is suddenly as fashionable as it was back in 1968, so we might as well give their old football tops a kicking as well as accusing them of being responsible for ruining Facebook and electing Trump and poisoning people outside supermarkets.

Anyway, four years ago in Brazil, while everyone was supping the juice out of coconuts, jigging a samba and generally having a technicolor carnival, the Russians were trudging round miserably in this incredibly austere and serious garment. Just looking at it makes you tired.

12. Republic of Ireland away (1994)

Much of the pasty Irish side were sunburned and irritable in the scorching heat of USA ’94, and their white change kit, with three feeble, fading green stripes down the middle, didn’t do Aldo, Keano and Steve Staunton any favours, appearance-wise.

11. Iran (1998)

Font failures: the Puma logo, shirt number, ‘I.R.’ letters and ‘COUPE DE MONDE FRANCE 98’ bit all orbit a weird, uncalled-for central tricolor IRAN motif, making Mehdi Mahdavikia resemble a Wolverhampton speedway ace with too many sponsors.