A Different Breed: Hideous Keeper Kits

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Editor’s Note: Thank you, thank you, thank you, Mr Clint Dempsey. Your scorpion kick attempt on Wednesday night brought us back to a piece we did nearly two years ago. Much less than seven degrees of separation brought us to the infamous “scorpion kicker” Rene Higuita…and the hideous keeper kits he and his between-the-pipes clan wear.


Tony Meola, the fifth Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle?

Tony Meola, the fifth Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle?

It is often said that soccer goalkeepers are a different breed. One way in which they stand-out from the crowd is by the “unique” kits they don on the pitch relative to their teammates. And “unique” can sometimes mean strange or just plain ugly.

I was reminded of this after watching the Chris Kirkland clad in all white (including a cap) let in five versus Manchester United on Saturday. Kirkland had no forehand, no backhand and certainly no style.

Then I was cued again while watching a giant leprechaun or Brad Friedel if you prefer play splendidly in yesterday’s upset of Liverpool. So, I thought I spend some time scouring the net for the most “unique” kits I could find.

A different breed, indeed.

Let’s address keepers wearing caps first before moving onto the ridiculous jerseys and the king of hideous penalty box attire…Jorge Campos.

Ted Doig...I blame you.

Ted Doig...I blame you.

Tennis, anyone?

It seems as if keepers wearing caps has some history behind it as Ted Doig wore one with a plastic chin strap way, way, way back in 1890s for Sunderland. Somewhat odd considering Sunderland’s lack of affinity for any sort of sunny weather.

Now, I’m all for awarding someone a cap when they play for an international team. But wearing it during the game! It’s just not a good look, from Kahn to Kirkland to Cech, but at least Cech has a reason for looking like he is going to be in the next Tron movie. For a very special treat, see what “Crazy Legs” once donned around his cabeza here.

I am guessing Ollie drive a convertible.

I am guessing Oliver Kahn was driving a convertible at the time.

(note from Matt: Is Miroslav Klose wearing a Miami Dophins uniform? Bizarre.)

Leaving the skull section, let’s go to jerseys. For a great history of the wicketkeeper shirt, head over to Goalkeepers Are Different. (Fitting, and somewhat complimentary name for the site, no?) As for the jerseys, the funny thing is that after seeing so many hideous ones you start thinking, “well that one isn’t that bad.” So, here we go with the most hideous! Hope you didn’t just eat.

If we missed any of your favorites, please post a link in the comments.

The Human Traffic Cone

Petr Cech moonlights in construction. (2009)

Allegedly, Petr Cech moonlights in construction. (2008)


The Q*bert

David Seaman impression of Jerry Seinfelds Puffy Shirt.

Welcome to David Seamen's nightmare. (1996)



The Cosby

Sombody give Mark Bosnich a Jello Pudding Pop already. (Early 90s)

Somebody give Mark Bosnich a Jello Pudding Pop already. (Early 90s)


The Spidey

Jeremie Janot never outgrew is underoos.

Unlike the rest of us, Jeremie Janot never outgrew his underoos. (2005)


The Grandma-ma

Ian Walker, Hotspurs: Nana would not be happy that I raided her closet

Ian Walker, Hotspurs: Nana would not be happy that I raided her closet


The “Gordon Gecko”

Even Bob Ross thinks there's one too many trees masquerading in this one (Espanyol 91)


The “Hey, Kool-Aid!”

Rumor has it Apoula Edima Bete Edel went straight from his Fruit of the Loom audition to the pitch. Talk about a hard worker. (2008)


The Look-Ma-No-Hands

This Sunderland jersey is pure stupid or you may have just gotten blackjack. (1994)


The Lion Queen

I'm guessing the designer of this Liverpool shirt was an Everton supporter. (Mid-90s)


The High School Auditorium Curtains

The fact that it was probably fire-retardant brought Les Sealey some comfort. (1993)


The Kaleidoscope of Death

Bound to throw the striker off with an epileptic seizure...can you see Brad Friedel in this thing? (Actually, I can, Aston Villa 1993)


The Whole Package

Rene Higuita is secure enough to rock the jheri curl and shiny hot pants.

Rene Higuita is secure enough to rock a jheri curl and shiny hot pants.

(I think I am required by law to mention the infamous Scorpion Kick.)

And the undisputed Godfather of the Keeper Kit…ladies and gentlemen, put your hands together for…the one…the only…

Jorge Campos

Jorge Campos...sponsored by Crayola.

"What?! What?! I'm on vacation."

Hey Jorge...are you color blind?

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22 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by matthewsf on 2009/08/25 at 12:38 AM

    Holy smokes! Rene Huguita has rocketed up the charts to one of my favorite players of all time.

    I fired up the Google-a-tor and here’s what I learned about Huguita:

    – He parties with Maradona (I should have known that–probably explains most of this) which probably also explains….
    – How he tested positive 2004 for playing on high quality “snow”
    – He once was in jail for kidnapping for helping out drug lord Pablo Escobar

    That’s just amazing.

    If you haven’t watched the Scorpion Kick….well…just watch it.


  2. Posted by Matthew N on 2009/08/25 at 4:25 AM

    Is there something wrong with me if I think every single one of these kits is awesome? These are so eccentric and wild that they just show how big of a man you are to be able to actually wear it in front of thousands of fans as well as your friends/colleagues.


    • Posted by Mark T on 2009/08/25 at 6:31 AM

      Yes, Matthew…there is something wrong with you. I certainly applaud the men for having the balls / stupidity to pull on these kits, but that doesn’t make my eyes hurt any less when I look at them.


    • Posted by matthewsf on 2009/08/25 at 7:41 AM

      I have to agree with my brother on this one. Something, let’s say off.

      Remember, this is *not* golf were playing,

      Two expressions in life are violated here, especially by David Seamen:

      – “dress for success”
      – “act as if” — as in if you want to be a successful goalie, dress like one.

      You just can’t be wearing a tablecloth.


  3. LOL! Great post!


  4. Posted by Mark T on 2009/08/25 at 6:59 AM

    For a bonus kit, check out this Tottenham Spurs jersey that I’ll dub, “The Rug”. Keepers must feel quite manly with the external layer of chest hair.


  5. Posted by sfshwebb on 2009/08/25 at 9:12 AM

    Dino Zoff (Italian great) used to eat glass to intimidate opponents…nuff said


  6. Posted by fernando on 2009/10/17 at 1:18 AM

    naaa. c’mon goalkeeper its a great and different position if you don’t understand, well i´m sorry
    si no entiendes lo que significa pasión en el futbol en méxico, centro y sudamerica, europa, asia, africa y oceania, pues no se puede hacer nada, football is passion, football is all, football is football, no soccer, just dont be aggressive, ok, no fashion, no style you´re right but you can say it funny because football = magic don’t kill it


  7. […] on the third leaves Chelsea without all 3 points. Only Tiger Woods is falling apart faster than the Human Traffic Cone…thank you, thank […]


  8. I’ve seen Marseille’s away kit also worn as a goalkeeper’s shirt so I’m gonna include it as a “ugly” keeper’s jersey. Although I’ve got a strange attraction to it.

    http://www. offthepost.info/2008/09/shit-lookalikes-marseille-away-shirt-and-your-dads-argyle-golf-sweater/


  9. […] (As I say that Friedel spills a deflection, but Eric Nevland is blinded by Friedel’s Big Bird suit today–you’ve got to see his git-up–and doesn’t arrive a rebound fast enough as Friedel covers.) More hideous keeper kits… […]


  10. Posted by 4now on 2011/06/08 at 10:53 PM

    This article makes me so happy. Bravo TSG!


  11. Posted by soccernst on 2011/06/08 at 11:10 PM

    I was about to say: “I don’t find the solid color ones offensive: the traffic cone? no problem, the LL Kool Aid, actually like that one”. And then I saw The Scorpion in his kansas flashdance asspants (with the hotwax residue). Yes it is a solid color, but it is far from solid.


  12. Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/06/09 at 7:01 AM

    Jorge Campos was the best thing that ever happened to US Soccer! Loved seeing him in the other net.


  13. Posted by obxfly on 2011/06/09 at 7:33 AM

    Any body see what Tim Howard’s camo design for next year? Should give Hibbert and Baines even more comfort knowing who’s behind them.



  14. Posted by Crotalus on 2011/06/09 at 8:05 AM

    Thing is with most of these ugly goalie kits from the ’90s – the ’90s were just a decade of bad taste in soccer kits all around. Look up national and club kits for any five teams, and I guarantee at least three of them will feature off-color triangles and weird zig-zag patterns.


    • Posted by Jared on 2011/06/09 at 8:09 AM

      Yeah, are any of these goalie kits that much worse than the 94 US denim abomination?


  15. is there any psychology to the funky kits? not so much the solid color ones featuring cech et al, but maybe the patterns strike fear in the hearts of strikers or do something to distract and throw them off? i really hope there’s a legit reason for some of these…


  16. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2011/06/11 at 8:17 AM

    Slightly off topic: does anybody know why the MNT and WNT wear different kits?


  17. Posted by Tab on 2012/06/11 at 2:18 PM

    Alma Guillermoprieto is a remarkable essayist. On — among other things — politics and society in Latin America.

    For them that are interested, her “The Heart That Bleeds” has some great descriptions of Higuita…



  18. […] Hideous Keeper Kits Worst Kits Video by Goal.com Football’s Worst Kits […]


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