Nike are reportedly close to agreeing a big money deal to become the new kit supplier to the England National Football Team, papers are reporting today.
Update: It’s now official – Nike England Kit
In a move which would see subsidiary Umbro ousted from the England shirts for the first time since the end of Admiral’s term as technical supplier in 1984, Nike would agree a lucrative deal with the English FA which would have to surpass the current £20m contract with Umbro.
Umbro’s deal is set to run until 2018, however, as Nike wish to sell the historic British brand in the short term, the American sporting superbrand are understandably keen to agree a deal with the English FA whilst they have some sway over Umbro.
Nike are also reportedly keen on capitalising on the feel-good factor surrounding sports in the UK following the Olympic games – which saw rivals adidas kit out Team GB with huge success.
With a new England Home shirt launched in time for the 2012 European Championships, Nike’s first order of business would be to re-vamp the currently-blue England Away Shirt which was revealed in Summer 2011. An educated guess would put the new shirt’s release date (if the deal goes through) at Spring 2013, with a new Home Shirt 6 months after.
However, when Nike took over the kit supplier deal to the French Football Federation, the Swoosh were keen to make their mark quickly, with a quick-fire release of both the new Home and Away jerseys within a month of each other.
Nike will have their work cut out for them should they take the reigns from Umbro. The Manchester-based brand have produced kits for the England national team since the 1950′s, and have produced a number of exceptional jerseys in that time – the current home and away included.
With Manchester City set to switch to Nike at the end of this season, are Nike a stripping Umbro of their best assets before the sale?
Or would a deal with Nike, who have pushed so much money and publicity into youth soccer in the US, Brazil and Poland actually be a good thing for English football?
Let us know in the comments!