The stage is set for the FIFA World Cup 2018 finals in Russia. Thirty-two teams, 32-days of action and 64 matches will conclusively establish the football World Champion for the next four years. The intervening period is as much about the goals and action as it is about brands and sponsorship, which give the financial muscle to make football one of the most celebrated sports across the world.
As players battle it out in the middle, the brands are ready with a multi-million strategy to catch global imagination for their products and services.
Apart from the mesmerising and bewildering skills of the global football stars, one more thing sure to catch the eyeballs of the millions around the world would be the playing kits of the 32 teams. Some will stand out for their beautiful and eye-catching patterns with a likeable brand appeal.
Many others may have kits which people think are bland and unimpressive. Nonetheless, it would still remain our own fashion opinions. The colours will not be worn by just the ones playing for their national sides, but also by the die-hard football fans around the world when they cheer for their ‘Doosri Country’. The team kits are the driving factor for the million dollar merchandising industry around the FIFA World Cup.
Kits for teams like Brazil, Uruguay, England and Portugal still have that essence from the original flannels and the designs have remained mostly the same for decades. While many others, including the ones who are new on the World Cup scene, have come up with stand-out designs and unique colour combinations representing the very quintessence of their nationality.
For these apparel brands, World Cup is an occasion to score over their business rivals. German sports, athleisure and shoe brand Adidas is the clear winner even before the ball starts rolling on June 14, 8.20 pm India time.
ADIDAS THE MOST VISIBLE
Adidas, which is also a long-standing FIFA partner, will have more brand presence as a kit/apparel partner of as many as 12 World Cup teams. This amount to 37.5% World Cup team kit share. The colours from the German brand would be donned by Iran, Morocco, Egypt, Mexico, Sweden, Japan, Columbia, Germany, Spain, Argentina, Belgium and the host Russia.
NIKE DRESSES UP 10 TEAMS
Nike stands second among the teams’ kit partners with tie-ups with the 10 national federations – Poland, Saudi Arabia, Australia, South Korea, England, Portugal, Croatia, France, Brazil, and Nigeria – who all have their representation in the FIFA World Cup 2018.
PUMA POWERS FOUR TEAMS
Another German sportswear giant Puma will have its large feline logo visible on the Four World Cup team kits namely Serbia, Switzerland, Senegal and Uruguay.
American sportswear brand New Balance will be visible only with two nations – Panama and Costa Rica. Umbro, Hummel, Errea and Uhlsport are four other kit sponsors with branding on just one nation’s kit each. Peru will be seen in the kits by English sportswear brand Umbro. Tunisia will be donning Uhlsport, a lesser known German sports goods brand. Denmark national team will be seen in kits manufactured by Hummel, their home country brand. At last, Iceland will be donning apparel made by Italian sports equipment brand Errea.
Belgium – Adidas
Nigeria – Nike
Brazil – Nike
Tunisia – Uhlsport
Iran – Adidas
Argentina – Adidas
Panama – New Balance
🇵🇦 The shirt that you will keep forever.
— New Balance Football (@NBFootball) April 6, 2018
France – Nike
Spain – Adidas
Morocco – Adidas
Morocco’s Home and away kits for the World Cup 🇲🇦 pic.twitter.com/EtCNketuwa
— Captain Morocco🇲🇦 (@AtIasLion) May 25, 2018
Poland – Nike
Denmark – Hummel
— hummel (@hummel1923) May 25, 2018
Croatia – Nike
Portugal – Nike
Germany – Adidas
Columbia – Adidas
Serbia – Puma
The new Serbia Puma away kit. I love it to be honest. pic.twitter.com/tOCSvd0Djw
— Serbian Football (@SerbianFooty) March 19, 2018
Saudi Arabia – Nike
Switzerland – Puma
— nationalteams_SFVASF (@SFV_ASF) November 12, 2017
Costa Rica – New Balance
— New Balance Football (@NBFootball) March 23, 2018
Japan – Adidas
England – Nike
Uruguay – Puma
Peru – Umbro
El diseño que Perú 🇵🇪 mostrará en su vuelta a un Mundial posee la característica franja roja que cruza la camiseta con la adición de ribetes dorados en los bordes de la misma, así como en los hombros. #Rusia2018 pic.twitter.com/gqbK3nslhv
— CONMEBOL.com (@CONMEBOL) June 1, 2018
Iceland – Errea
Egypt – Adidas
— adidas Football (@adidasfootball) April 22, 2018
Mexico – Adidas
Sweden – Adidas
Australia – Nike
Adidas – Russia
South Korea – Nike
Senegal – Puma
— Senegal Football🇸🇳 (@SenegalFootball) March 19, 2018