An AFL jersey in your team's colour is a must-have for any true fan. Australians (and many international fans, of course) are pretty lucky when it comes to AFL jerseys - the designs are decent and show your support without making a bold fashion statement that you might not necessarily want to make. There's also something so wonderfully Australian about them, and you can wear them in a surprisingly wide variety of social occasions - something that doesn't happen so much in other countries. So the next time you grab your AFL jersey in case it gets cold after that dinner party, just spare a thought for some other sport fans out there around the world. Maybe think yourself lucky that your beloved team's jersey isn't like some of these weird designs from across the globe…
Unfortunate in Italy
ACF Fiorentina should probably have sacked their jersey designers after the uniform for 1992 was unveiled. This soccer team from Florence, Italy kitted their players out in a weird jersey with intercepting angular shapes that when viewed from certain angles, looked just like swastikas. Since having your players running around wearing the symbol of Nazi Germany wasn't thought to be a good idea, this design and its accidental optical effect was dropped in 1993.
Some Spanish Sauce
Bilbao, Spain, has done a lot to position itself as an international city of culture, and perhaps the most significant step on this journey was the opening of a Spanish version of the Guggenheim art museum in 1997. Seven years after this, the town's soccer team (Athletic Bilbao) decided to celebrate their 100th anniversary with a Guggenheim inspired artistic new uniform. It sounds like a nice idea, but the end result looked like the players had clumsily spilled large amounts of tomato sauce all over themselves.
A Diamond Disgrace
You don't even need to look overseas for a jersey that a fan would think twice about wearing. Fortunately, the worst offender in AFL jersey history was only worn once, although that was one time too many. Hawthorn fans will struggle to forget their horror when they first saw the 1995 pre-season jersey (and fans of other teams might still remember their laughter). This diamond patterned sleeveless vest was just worn during a game against Sydney and was never seen again in an official capacity. It's not a totally hideous jersey, but the diamond pattern would be much more suitable for a game of golf… on a hot day.
When compared to some of these poorly conceived designs, your AFL jersey wouldn't look out of place in a fashion show (especially when professionally designed by companies like Jerseys Megastore). Hopefully it will stay that way, so fingers crossed for when your team unveils their next jersey design!