Spain have unveiled their new shirt for the 2018 World Cup to be played in Russia but rather than being snapped up by the usual thousands of supporters the shirt has caused outrage because it is said to resemble the colours of the republican flag that was Spain’s official flag between 1931 and 1939 and is still used by many who want to abolish the country’s monarchy.
Designed and manufactured by Adidas, and approved by the Spanish Football Federation, it is the combination of red, yellow and purple that has everyone up in arms, particularly the vertical stripe in which the horizontal blue motifs merge with red stripes, giving a certain visual effect.
When seen from a distance, in the same way that impressionist paintings should be viewed, it looks like a purple band next to a yellow one against a red background. Optically, it could be considered to imitate the colours of the Republic, an abhorrence for many, a cause for celebration for others.
Adidas say that the shirt is based on the jersey worn by Spain at the 1994 World Cup with yellow and blue flashes down the side of the red top but because the yellow and the blue merge the purple Illusion is caused.
Ordinarily perhaps, there might have been only the odd observation, but Spain isn’t really in the mood for humour right now with the country currently embroiled in heated debate over Catalonia’s unilateral declaration of independence from the rest of Spain. Emotions are quite impassioned.
Needless to say the design has alarmed the traditionalists while [Podemos leader] Pablo Iglesias whooped in approval. It has also caused havoc on social media and been widely criticised in the Spanish press.