Creative Soccer Culture

The 10 Best Shirts From The 2022 Africa Cup of Nations

The Africa Cup of Nations gets underway this weekend, so who’s in for the best dressed award? With 17 different brands kitting out the 24 nations, we’ve selected our favourite kits from the bunch.

Africa boasts a host of nations that all have their own rich and vibrant culture, and it’s set to be on full display from this Sunday, when the Cameroon-hosted tournament finally gets underway after being delayed due to Covid. Bright colours and bold shapes, proudly displaying the identity of the teams and countries wearing them – the Africa Cup of Nations is unlike any other international competition in many ways, not least shirt design. And without a ball being kicked, we’ve rounded up what we think are the best kits set to feature in the tournament.

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10. Gabon Home

At first glance the Gabon home kit from Kappa could just look like a Brazil knock off, but closer inspection reveals that striking sublimated panther, symbolising the nation's nickname.

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9. Ghana Away

Like an international BVB, the Ghana Away shirt adds in yellow and black in place of the black and white of the home shirt, lending the design a more complete feel.

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8. Ivory Coast Home

PUMA used the same design for the home and away shirts for Ivory Coast, and while we love the monochrome away look, you just can't beat the vibrancy that's offered up by Les Éléphants home colours.

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7. Nigeria Away

Nike showing off just how a simple application on collar and cuffs can make a design. So easy, so good.

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6. Ethiopia Home

Umbro have blessed Ethiopia with three really strong designs, but for us the stand out is the home shirt. The bright green with that great deterioration effect revealing that sublimated triangular graphic – uniquely brilliant.

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5. Zimbabwe Home

The Zimbabwe setup finely treads that line between artistry and disaster, and while the away shirt possibly leans slightly in the latter's direction (still can't be sure though, it may be a grower) the home shirt gets our vote of confidence, bringing everything you'd expect to the tournament. Looking forward to seeing this one on pitch.

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4. Egypt Home

Another one where the design is duplicated for the home and away shirt, but for us, as good as the away shirt is, the home shirt is the nation's colours just takes it. That hieroglyphic graphic perfectly captures the identity of the country. Don't ask us what it says though.

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3. Senegal Home

What a look Senegal have for the tournament! That pastel colour scheme combined with that mosaic effect graphic. Subtle, yet striking. And it you want it a bit more bright, the away shirt offers the perfect alternative. Tough to pick our favourite of the two.

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2. Mali Away

If you said you hated this, we could see where you were coming from. But for us, this is as bold as you get: that awesome graphic across the shoulders, and the stripe system forming the eagle's wings. Not much more bad ass than an eagle either, is there? Kudos to relatively unknown brand Airness for this.

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1. Nigeria Home

Was never going to be anything other, was it? Is it better than the 2018 World Cup shirt? Nope. But does that take away from the design? Absolutely not. Simply has to be the best shirt at AFCON.

Honourable mentions for Comoros Away, Burkino Faso Away, Mauritania Home, Tunisia Away, Cape Verde Home, Equatorial Guinea Third... Should've made this a Top 20 list. Just so much goodness. Let's hope the action on the pitch lives up to the standard of kit design.

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Daniel Jones

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