Friday, 29 March 2013

Racing Club De Lens 2003-04 Away

Next up in the Lens series is another away shirt, this time from the 2003-04 season. I brought this shirt from a French web site,, this was before Sports Direct started stocking as many shirts as they do now.
This was Lens' first shirt made by Nike, a much more plain effort than the previous Umbro shirts.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Racing Club De Lens Away 1996-97

Next up in my RC Lens collection is the away shirt from the 96-97 season. This shirt was purchased recently from eBay, it's in amazing condition considering the age, it's also very rare. The shirt signifies the Umbro shirts from that period, using bold colours and designs, a long way from the current plain "tailored by Umbro" range.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Racing Club De Lens 1996-97

Lens have always been my favourite team from France, quite simply because they happen to wear the same colours of my beloved Watford FC. I first noticed them when I was on holiday as a child and used to buy French football magazines. The more I got to know about Lens the more I realised they had far more in common with Watford than I 1st thought. Both teams are from small towns with similar sized populations, both clubs are very much family orientated and have a rather chequered history in terms of silverware....or lack of it! The most striking similarity is the youth set ups, Lens are famed for producing talented players and selling them on for profit, most recently Thorgan Hazard, the younger brother of Eden.
Lens' nickname is "Sang et Or" which translates to Blood and gold....this pays homage to Lens' mining history, the gold for the valuable minerals which were mined and the blood for the dedication of the miners themselves. This moves us nicely onto the shirts.....
The first Lens shirt I brought was from the 1996-97 season, it was actually found by a friend of mine when he was shopping, he hid it at the back behind some Liverpool shirts (probably a good place to hide them!) so it wouldn't get brought before I could get there! I'm not sure how I ever had any money to buy it but it was most defiantly in the sale, probably helped persuade my Dad with the Watford connections....

I seem to remember Lens were one of the only French clubs at the time to have kit supplied by Umbro, probably another reason that drew me to them, along with the fetching "Shopi" sponsor, this was a chain of supermarkets like Spar which I don't think exist anymore, like the soon to be defunct Umbro themselves. I'm hoping this will make the shirt more collectible in the future but being my 1st Lens shirt it holds a great deal of sentimental value anyway.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Algeria shirt 2010

One of my more unusual shirts here, although technically I only brought this for my brother, thought he'd like the "desert rats" homage on the shoulder. The shirt was produced for the 2010 African Cup of nations. It's hard to see in the pictures but the back of the shirt features a distinctive woven style pattern.

Dortmund Away 2012

This weeks shirt is the Dortmund away shirt from the current season (2012-13). The shirt was purchased without the name set, this was ordered separately from eBay, had a bit of a nightmare trying to apply it as none of the shops I tried would let me use their heat press, in the end I got lucky at the Swindon Town shop, although they charged me £5 to print it on!