Creative Soccer Culture

Does The Spurs 22/23 Home Shirt Allow For A More Expressive Away & Third?

The Spurs home shirt dropped recently, arriving in a look that embraced the traditional feel of the club while attempting to inject an element of freshness. But it got us to thinking: does playing it relatively safe with the home shirt allow space for more radical away and third designs?

Nike released the new Spurs home shirt last week, and like Liverpool’s new home shirt, it arrived with what appears to be a fairly unadventurous design. Yep, it’s white, although to its credit, some hits of neon volt details in the collar and cuff do differentiate it from what’s come before. The look once again embraces the tradition and identity of the club, built over its 140-year history, and goes on a step from the ultra-minimalist effort from last season – while still keeping things rather simplistic. But as we saw with last year, does a relatively “safe” home effort that sticks close to the classic club look then allow more in the way of exploration for a side’s alternate strips?

Last year, Tottenham’s home shirt was a bit uninspiring. Bland, you might even say, with barely anything beyond the white base colour, even doing away with the navy trim that usually accompanies it. But then, to counter that, the North London side got one of the most radical away shirts in the history of England’s top flight. To say it was divisive was an understatement, but the design – an expressive print that represented the collective creativity from local minds – was certainly bold, and it actually grew on a lot of fans, both in the Spurs camp and beyond. 

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The question is then, would that wild design have been possible if the home shirt had been as equally wild, or does one balance the other? Are Nike attempting to please the purists and progressives alike by splitting the home and away, satisfying the demand for an identity that stretches beyond the pitch and honours the history of a club, even if that means keeping the home traditional but somewhat tame, while the away or third goes firmly in the other direction, exploring the boundaries of acceptability and creativity in jersey design?

Home shirts by their nature are always going to be difficult to keep fresh year on year, and that becomes even harder when the side plays in white – but it’s not impossible. For Spurs, the return of the navy trim and the inclusion of the volt details certainly elevates the same shade of pristine Lilywhite that the side have worn for the past 124 years, while the inside of both the collar and cuffs are also embellished with the word "Spurs" for an added flourish. One thing is absolutely for sure with the design, and that is that it’s unmistakably a Spurs shirt, so in that sense, job most certainly done.

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The new home design also arrives in the new Nike authentic 22/23 Vaporknit template, which features a new knit pattern. It’s the 2022 World Cup template that Nike will use for the upcoming tournament in Qatar, getting a run out ahead of the December showpiece. The modern, fitted template is designed to allow more dynamic movement thanks to panel cuts inspired by base-layer compression wear, and it offers a new texture to the shirts’ designs, despite it being a reversion to the dreaded “template” approach – something the brand were said to be veering away from back in 2020. Still, no complaints here so long as the look of the kits are unique enough, which the Spurs offering certainly is. 

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But back to the point: does a home shirt that places a big ol’ tick in the tradition box allow for more wriggle room in the away, third and even fourth options? While we’ll have to wait to see what’s in store for the likes of Spurs this season when they’re on the road, their home shirt goes to show that you don’t have to be completely uninspired, as last season was. Sure, there’s still space for more excitement – there’s always room for that – but so long as there’s the right combination of tradition – of the shirt representing the club in the purest sense – and freshness, then we’re all in. Still doesn’t stop us being excited to see where this season’s alternate options go though…

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Pick up the Tottenham Hotspur 22/23 home shirt at

Daniel Jones

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