The news yesterday that Ashley is moving in on Ibrox again – more on that later, believe me – comes as Castore announces that they have “sold out in several sizes” of the new Sevco strip. I find that funny in a number of ways.
For openers, why, when I hear “several sizes” do I automatically think of those overweight tattooed yobs who spent much of the last fortnight guarding the statues in George Square? The staunchest of the staunch, you just know they already have theirs on pre-order, right?
The thing is, you see a blue jersey in a crowd of beer-gutted goons and it’s nothing but a blue jersey. This has always been the ridiculous thing for me in Sevco’s self-aggrandisement every time they sign a shirt deal. “The famous blue strip” is a total misnomer.
It’s exactly what it says on tin; a plain blue top, nothing fancy, nothing that’s going to catch the eye.
How many times have you seen it now?
There’s some major event, somewhere in the world, with all the television cameras trained on it … and there in the crowd you can clearly see a Celtic strip. Our top is iconic. Those Hoops mark it out from almost every other shirt on the planet.
If you were designing a strip from scratch you would not pick a single colour and a plain design; you’d go for something like what we have. You won’t get unique … but something that stands out. Castore think of themselves as a premium brand, but here they are marketing a plain blue shirt and having to come to terms with selling their stock in Sports Direct.
This is the price they pay, of course, for climbing into bed with Sevco, and all of that is to say nothing of the enormous price they will pay in reputational damage when the first images of scumbags wearing the new top whilst dancing around a 12 July bonfire.
The Celtic shirt is iconic in more ways than one … when the Sevco shirt is seen on TV at all you’re more likely to get it on Crimewatch as anywhere else.
Sevco will never be able to compete with the Hoops, no matter how many XXXL strips they sell.
The Hoops stands out a mile, in any setting … a Sevco top could be any number of different shirts.
It could be a plain blue jersey with no connection to football at all.
The Sevco strip is the shirt of choice for some though; the Loyalist, the boot-boy, the bigot, the thug, the neo-Nazi, the fascist, the militarist, the sectarian. What a great advertisement they are for the brand, resplendent in the colours as they fight with the police, spit on passers-by, scream obscenities and rant about fenians.
That kind of publicity, well you just can’t buy it …
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