The 2018/19 Liverpool Home Kit from New Balance has just been revealed. Liverpool has quickly became one of the most prestigious Premier League sides and fans have been waiting anxiously for a new kit launch. The latest home jersey for the storied club comes with a richer, deeper red than usual.
Clad in a darker hue of the club’s traditional red with white details, Liverpool’s 2018/19 home jersey features a fashionable red polo collar with two-button placket, and white trim. The sleeves have separate material made of a banded texture, with thin white trim dividing the texture from the rest of the sleeves.
The base detail at the front of the jersey has linear stripes inspired by the architecture of Anfield’s redeveloped Main Stand. Thin white trim also runs down each sides of the shirt. New Balance’s logo and a Liverbird emblem with the club’s initals L.F.C. are placed on the chest in white.
The back of the jersey retains a Hillsborough Disaster tribute with a 96 placed between two flames in white under the collar. Liverpool will feature new typography with a slimmer font and numbers for most non-Premier League matches. The shorts and socks are also in red, with white trim and details. Standard Chartered returns as primary sponsor, with Western Union a secondary sponsor on the left sleeve.
Liverpool Football Club have grown to become one of the sports top global brands, winning eighteen English league titles and five European Cups/UEFA Champions League titles in its history. But what many people don’t know about the storied club is that it might never have been formed in the first place had it not been a simple dispute over beer.
Prior to 1892, the only premier football club on Merseyside was Everton Football Club, themselves formed in 1878. John Houlding, local town council member who eventually became mayor of Liverpool, was club president of Everton Football Club and landowner to the ground they played at located between Anfield Road and Walton Breck Road since 1884.
Houlding also made a name for himself as a brewer of fine English ales, started to alienate himself from the rest of the Everton board members. He charged the club rent for use of his land, which he would slowly increase annually to the annoyance of many board members. But it was his insistence that his ales be sold on the ground which many consider to be the straw that broke the camel’s back.
The situation rose to a boil in September of 1891 when he suggested that Everton Football Club purchase the ground at Anfield Road, but the board members scoffed at the asking price. Houlding wanted the club to purchase their ground to maximize profits for the club, but most board members resented the fact that Houlding himself would profit from the transaction. They insisted on a long-term lease agreement instead. Unable to resolve their differences, Houlding broke away from Everton and officially formed Liverpool Football Club on March 15, 1892.
In their first season as a club, Liverpool went on to win the Lancashire League to earn promotion into the second division of the Football League. They went undefeated in their second season, eventually earning promotion to the top tier of English football with a 2-0 playoff victory over Newton Heath F.C. (the club that would eventually become Manchester United). Their first of eighteen league titles came in 1901.
The Liverpool dynasty began with the hiring of Bill Shankly in 1959. Upon his arrival, Shankly released 24 players and re-shaped the club into an English powerhouse with the help from his primary assistant Bob Paisley. Shankly retired in 1974, Paisley took over and continue their reign of success.
Over twenty-four years, the two managers won nine league titles and three European Cups. They both were immortalized by the club with the creation of entry gates into the ground at Anfield. Fans that make the pilgrimage to the stadium inevitable stop for pictures at the Shankly Gates and Paisley Gates.
Success for the club continued through the 80’s with four more league titles and another European Cup, primarily due to star players like Kenny Dalglish, Ian Rush, and John Barnes among others.
Unfortunately, the dynasty slowly waned at the end of the decade as the club was scarred with two major tragedies. Liverpool faced Juventus in the 1985 European Cup final at Heysel Stadium in Brussels. A conflict between the two sets of fans caused a retaining wall to collapse at the stadium killing 39 fans, mostly Italian supporters of Juventus. The tragedy resulted in a ban on English clubs from Europeans competitions for five years.
The second tragedy occurred on April 15, 1989 during the FA Cup semifinal between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest played at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield. Overcrowding in the pens behind the goal ultimately caused the death of 96 Liverpool supporters. The Hillsborough tragedy affected the players more than anyone realized, and the club has yet reclaimed the glory they experienced prior. Initially labeled as the blame for the incident by both police and media, the families of the 96 victims continue to fight for justice for decades before finally getting vindicated by the courts only recently.
‘Justice for the 96’ became a rallying cry for Liverpool supporters and continues to bond supporters of the storied club today. The club jersey features a ‘96’ memorial between 2 eternal flames on their jerseys.
Recently Liverpool have been surpassed in success by other English clubs, but fan support has never been greater. The atmosphere around the ground at Anfield Stadium is unparalleled, and to hear the fans serenade their players with the club anthem ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ leaves many fans in tears. The recent hiring of Jürgen Klopp as manager has reinvigorated the club, and many expect success with titles will soon follow. For the millions of global supporters of Liverpool Football Club, it won’t come soon enough.
Liverpool have had numerous players that could be considered legendary. Past and present these men have helped shape Liverpool Football Club into one of the most popular global brands of football today. It would be extremely difficult to quantify how one player could be more legendary than another, and even more challenging to streamline the list down to only ten. Many players could be considered worthy enough to make this list, but (in alphabetical order) here are ten players that have helped make Liverpool Football Club what it is today.
John Barnes - When at his best, there was nothing finer than watching John Barnes glide down the left flank for Liverpool. The first prominent minority player in club history, Barnes joined the club in 1987 and immediately made an impact scoring two goals against Queens Park Rangers in an early 4-0 victory at Anfield. Despite being subjected to the occasional racial slur and frequent taunting, Barnes was the consummate professional and quieted the opposing fans with his stellar play. His career spanned eleven seasons for Liverpool, earning two Footballer of the Year awards along the way. He scored 84 goals for the Reds, helping them win five major trophies in the process. Throughout his Liverpool career, Barnes wore the #10 jersey.
Ian Callaghan - In the category of records likely to never be broken, Ian Callaghan currently holds the mark for most matches played at Liverpool Football Club. Even more remarkable than the 857 matches played is the fact that the English midfielder had been booked only one time throughout his nineteen-year Liverpool career. Callaghan joined the club in 1960 as a seventeen-year old and helped lift the club through promotion winning the Second Division in 1962. He was an integral part of the Bill Shankly era winning the English league five times as well as the club’s first European Cup in 1977. For most of his career, Callaghan donned the #11 jersey for Liverpool.
Jamie Carragher - In an era of big-money foreign-imports came a local Liverpool lad that worked his way through the ranks to become one of the finest central defenders to ever play on Merseyside. Jamie Carragher was originally an Everton supporter growing up in the suburb of Bootle, but chose the Liverpool academy as a child due to their superior coaching reputation. He debuted with the first team during the League Cup quarterfinal twenty days before his nineteenth birthday. Ten days later he made his first start for the club, scoring a header off a corner kick in a 3-0 victory over Aston Villa. He was a one-club player and became one of the game’s finest defenders with his strength in tackling and ability to read the game. Carragher retired following the conclusion of the 2012/13 season with more European matches (150) than any other Liverpool player in history. His 737 matches played put him in second place all-time for matches played behind only Ian Callaghan. Currently Jamie is now a popular pundit on English television, and remains active in Liverpool with his charitable foundation for local disadvantaged children. Throughout his entire career, Jamie Carragher only wore jersey #23.
Kenny Dalglish - The first name on most everyone’s list of Liverpool legends is usually Kenny Dalglish. The Scottish striker joined the club from Celtic in 1977 to replace the departing Kevin Keegan and became a legend almost immediately. Nine months into his Liverpool career he scored the only goal at Wembley Stadium as the Reds defeated Club Brugge for their second straight European Cup. Throughout the 1980’s Dalglish established himself as the premier player in English football and eventually was named the club’s only player-manager (winning three league titles in that role) after Joe Fagan resigned in 1985. He lived through the Hillsborough tragedy that took 96 lives as his club played Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup semifinal. Dalglish attended many funerals of those victims, including four in one day, but the stress and guilt would ultimately affect his health and force his resignation in 1991. He returned to manage the club in January of 2011 following the sacking of Roy Hodgson and lead the club to win the 2012 League Cup. If you attend a Liverpool match today, you’ll likely see Dalglish sitting in the stands. Fans still sing his name in the chorus of the popular song ‘Fields of Anfield Road, where once we watched the King Kenny play… AND COULD HE PLAY!’ Dalglish wore the famous #7 jersey during his playing career.
Robbie Fowler - It takes a special player to earn the nickname “God” by the adoring supporters of your club. Robbie Fowler arguably could be considered one of the most gifted goalscorers to ever play for Liverpool. The local kid from Toxteth scored in his first match for the club in a 3-1 League Cup victory over Fulham in September 1993 at the age of eighteen. He burst onto the scene in 1994 playing in all 57 of Liverpool’s matches that season while scoring thirty-one goals. He went on to score over thirty goals in the next two seasons on his way to 183 total goals in only 266 matches for the club. It wasn’t just the fact that he could score goals, rather it was that he could score goals from anywhere on the pitch regardless of angle or distance. His Liverpool career was interrupted by short stints at both Leeds United and Manchester City, but he returned for one more season in 2006 and added eight more tallies in the process. He first wore the #23 jersey for the club, but shifted to the more popular #9 kit after Ian Rush departed the club in 1996.
Steven Gerrard - No player has been more influential to Liverpool Football Club than Steven Gerrard. The legendary midfield played at the Academy as a boy before breaking into the first team at the age of 17 years old. He quickly made a name for himself and earned the squad captaincy at the age of 23. Fans today still refer to him as Captain Fantastic. He had a penchant for scoring the big goal when the team needed it most. He scored 120 goals from midfield, but you’d hardly get a consensus from supporters as to which goal was the greatest. Perhaps the most important goal would have to be the powerful second-half header in the 2005 Champions League Final at Istanbul. Trailing 3-0 against AC Milan, that goal spurred the greatest comeback in that competition’s history which culminated with Gerrard hoisting the club’s fifth European Cup. To this day he remains the only footballer to have ever scored in the finals of the FA Cup, League Cup, UEFA Cup, and Champions League. He wore the #28 jersey in his first two seasons and then took #17 for the 2000/01 season. Once Emile Heskey left the club in 2004, Gerrard grabbed the iconic #8 jersey that most fans recognize as his own. While the club has not officially retired this number, no player has worn the #8 for Liverpool since his departure in 2015.
Sami Hyypiä - When Liverpool signed the little-known 25-year old Finnish defender from Dutch club Willem II in May of 1999, no one predicted that he would remain long enough to be considered legendary. As many Scandinavians tend to do, Sami had supported Liverpool as a child and jumped at the chance to join the club. After his first full season, Sami was named vice-captain along with Robbie Fowler where he helped lead Liverpool to a cup treble (winning the League Cup, FA Cup, and UEFA Cup). He subsequently assumed full captain duties after Fowler left the club the next year. When Rafa Benitez paired Hyypiä with Jamie Carragher upon in 2004, the two clicked to form one of the most formidable defensive partnerships ever assembled at Anfield. That season they helped Liverpool win its fifth European Cup in the ‘Miracle of Istanbul.’ Despite frequent speculation that he would move on to other clubs throughout his Liverpool career, Hyypiä remained for ten seasons. He played 464 matches for the club, scoring 35 goals from defense while winning ten trophies. He wore the #12 kit for the first two seasons before changing to #4 for the bulk of his Liverpool career.
Kevin Keegan - He only played six full seasons at the club, but there’s no denying the legendary status of one of the game’s most notorious strikers. Kevin Keegan was twenty years old when he joined Liverpool from Scunthorpe United, scoring his first goal in only twelve minutes in that season’s league opener against Nottingham Forest. Throughout his career, he was known as much for his bubble perm haircut as he was for his prolific touch around the goal. He scored exactly 100 goals for the club, winning three league titles and a European Cup in the process. It was a disappointing day when it was announced that he would leave the club following the 1977 campaign to play in the German Bundesliga. Keegan wore the #7 jersey during his brief stay with Liverpool.
Ian Rush - Liverpool’s all-time leading goal scorer, Ian Rush was perhaps the most clinical finisher of his generation. He arrived at the club in 1980 after two successful seasons with nearby lower league Chester City. Throughout his fifteen seasons, the Welshman score an incredible 342 goals for Liverpool in 660 matches played. That’s sixty more goals for the club than second-place Roger Hunt. Rush netted 47 times during the 1983/84 season (another club record) and became the first British footballer to win the European Golden Boot award. That season continues to be considered one of the greatest in the club history, where Liverpool won the treble (League championship, League Cup, and European Cup). Throughout his storied career, Ian Rush wore the #9 jersey.
Luis Suarez - When the club agreed to let Fernando Torres leave for Chelsea at the end of January 2011, they used those funds to acquire a young Uruguayan striker from Ajax Amsterdam named Luis Suarez. Upon his arrival at the club Suarez requested and was given the #7 jersey, not knowing the legacy of that number which was also worn by legendary strikers Kevin Keegan and Kenny Dalglish. It didn’t take long for him to prove his worthiness of that jersey. Sometimes overshadowed by his antics, Luis Suarez was a threat to score every time he touched the ball (which he did 69 times for Liverpool). His Liverpool career peaked in the magical 2013/14 season where he almost single-handedly won the league title for Liverpool. Suarez tallied 31 times in 33 league matches that season, despite not taking a single penalty kick for the club. Widely considered one of the top three players in the world after that season, Barcelona paid a club record transfer fee of £65M to bring his talents to Spain. He only played 110 games for Liverpool in three and a half seasons, but quickly became a Kop legend and is still revered by the Kop today.
Liverpool Football Club are known for their iconic all-red kit, the only club in the Premier League that sports red from head-to-toe on their home kit.
Most fans may not realize that red wasn’t even their original color! As the club broke away from Everton Football Club in 1892, the team sported a light blue and white vertically-halved kit that resembles the modern Blackburn Rovers for the first four years of existence. It wasn’t until 1896 that the club changed its official color to red.
For over half a century, the home kit consisted of red shirt, white shorts, and red socks. Periodically the club wore black socks into the look but for the most part the kit remained the same.
In 1955 the club introduced the famous liverbird, setting it on its perch above the heart on the left-side of the chest where she still sits today. The symbol represented the prestige that comes with playing for and representing the city of Liverpool.
The next major change to the kit was brought forth in 1964 at the insistence of legendary manager Bill Shankly. They replaced the white shorts and went with the all-red combination that you see at Anfield today. Shankly was quoted as saying the players ‘had a glow out there like a fire was burning.’ Success on the pitch soon followed, and while it would be silly to claim that a change in the kit could be responsible it was still considered a psychological advantage as it inspired by players and supporters alike.
Shirt sponsorship was introduced in 1979 with Japanese electronics maker Hitachi being the first company to put its name on the front of the Liverpool shirt. The sponsorship deal with Hitachi lasted only three seasons, with Liverpool winning two league titles and one European Cup during the short tenure.
Before the 1982/83 season, Crown Paints assumed the role as shirt sponsors for the next six seasons. Despite sporting three different Crown Paint logos in only six seasons, success on the pitch continued with four more league titles and another European Cup in 1984.
Italian household appliance manufacturer Candy became the primary shirt sponsor before the 1988/89 season for what would become a four-year relationship with the club. During the time the club won it’s eighteenth and most recent league title.
Danish brewing company Carlsberg grabbed the reigns as shirt sponsor in 1992 and became one of the most iconic names to front any football jersey. Branded as ‘probably the best lager in the world,’ Carlsberg developed an association with Liverpool Football Club that was one of the longest-standing deal in English football history lasting eighteen seasons.
Much to the disappointment of fans all around the world, Carlsberg couldn’t afford to match the £80m price tag for a four-season deal offered by international bank Standard Chartered and the club switched allegiances when their existing deal expired in 2010. The economical decision came at a critical juncture in club history as Liverpool drifted deep into debt due to the failed leveraged takeover by Americans Tom Hicks and George Gillett. The sudden influx of new revenue from the Asian bankers helped keep the club viable until the final sale to John Henry’s Fenway Sports Group (FSG) was approved in October 2010. The Standard Chartered name continues to be the primary shirt sponsor seen today, under contract with the club through the 2018/19 season.