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You’re Shirt, and You Know You Are: Ten Years of Port FC Kits

 

With the 10s coming to a close, I thought it time to look back on Port’s sartorial record over the last decade and rank the home shirts in order of stylishness. There isn’t really a lot you can do with orange and blue stripes, but that hasn’t stopped various designers from trying to put their own unique stamp on the hallowed shirt, and has resulted in some very nice shirts, some unnecessary fannying about, and a couple of real atrocities. So, starting with the worst, here’s my rundown of ten years of Port shirts…

 

10: 2019

 

 

It may be the shirt in which Port won their first trophy of the decade, but other than that there is little to commend it. It clearly marks the point at which GrandSport, tired of working on new Port designs only for La Pang to slap that big, ugly MTI logo on them, simply threw their hands up, cracked open a few Leos, and handed over a shirt designed solely to accommodate the dreaded blue square. There’s very little actual orange on it, the shorts are massive, and as anyone who bought the shirt will confirm, it’s far too long. Hands down the worst Port shirt of all time.

9: 2012

 

 

Another shirt that looks like it was designed to give the sponsor some better exposure, this FBT horror from 2012 adds the stripes as an afterthought and has some silly blue bits on the sleeve to make it look as if they’ve put some effort in. What a mess.

8: 2011

 

 

 

There’s a fine line between classic and awful, and this effort falls just on the wrong side due to the designer deciding, presumably after a night on the Blend, to add some yellow stripes, collar and cuffs for no discernible reason. WHY?

7: 2018

 

 

Another poor effort from Grand Sport here. It’s half a classic – the right hand side of the shirt with the classic orange & blue stripes is very nice indeed and, had they made the whole shirt like this, it might have made the top three. But for some reason the left hand side throws in black and purple stripes and turns it into a real soi dog’s breakfast. I like the round collar, and it’s a very nice fit, but otherwise it has little to commend it.

6: 2015

 

 

Into mid-table now, and a just-about-acceptable effort from 2015, the season when Port had three different shirts. This was the first shirt of the Pang era, and stuck fairly closely to the classic stripes, but lost points by having more sponsor logos than an F1 car, and being very poor quality indeed – my wife’s shirt barely lasted 3 washes before all the badges faded out. But this was the shirt that clothed the mighty Gorka, so a special place in Port history.

5: 2016

 

 

A bit of a grower this one. I didn’t like the white sleeves at first but it’s actually become a bit of a classic and, due to the club massively overestimating how many shirts the club would sell in T2 and it not being released until two months into the season, it’s still on sale in the club shop today. Classic stripes, a nice collar, a snug fit, and the debut of the current lion badge make this a very nice shirt indeed.

4: 2013

 

 

Pretty much everything a Port shirt should be this – orange & blue stripes, simple round neck, and PAT in big letters on the front. A textbook example of why shirt designers shouldn’t fanny about too much.

3: 2014

 

 

Then again, sometimes a bit of fanny can be a good thing, as this lovely Mizuno shirt from 2014 proves. Maybe it has a special place in my heart as it’s the first Port shirt I ever bought, but I really like the way the left & right sides of the shirt mirror each other. Apart from the rather pointless white bit on the collar, it’s almost perfect.

2: 2017

 

 

A fine effort from GrandSport this. A stylish collar, nice dark sleeves, and some superb stripe work. Again, it’s let down by that bloody blue square, but otherwise it’s a very nice shirt indeed and if you have the version with the ’50th Anniversary’ badge on, worth at least 2000BHT these days.

1: 2010

 

 

Port’s first shirt of the decade would also turn out to be by far the best. The only time this decade Port worked with one of the big shirt manufacturers, it just does everything right – lovely stripes, just the one, tasteful sponsor logo, and the three stripes & Adidas badge. Truly a thing of beauty and the black away shirt was a belter too.

 

Don’t agree with my selection? Vote for your favourite shirt below and we’ll reveal the readers’ choice on Monday!

 

 

The FAT Catwalk 2019: Every T1 Kit Rated & Slated

 

2018’s FAT Catwalk, in which we ranked every Thai League T1 club’s kit, proved to be one of our most popular features ever, so we’re doing it again for 2019! I have to say this year’s crop is, with a couple of exceptions, a big improvement on 2018, with local kit makers such as Warrix, Ari and Grandsport upping their game and doing Thai football proud. It’s also great to see more & more clubs trying to blend sponsor logos into the design of their shirts, though the issue of too many garish sponsor logos remains, and it seems the concept of strict sponsorship restrictions is some way off. Anyway, here’s the long-awaited (delayed due to one particular club not releasing their shirt until the second week of the season…) 2019 Thailand T1 Football Shirt League Table!

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The FAT Catwalk: All 2018 T1 Kits Rated & Slated

 

It’s a little known fact that the Sandpit team are all hardcore fashionistas. Dom writes for Vogue Thailand, Tom is one of Bangkok’s most popular Youtube makeup vloggers, and I am a former Calvin Klein underwear model. Honest. So this week is Sandpit Fashion Week as I take a look at this season’s lineup of T1 kits and separate the Versace from the Primark, in descending order of quality…

 

1. Chiang Rai Utd

I’m not generally a fan of Puma shirts but Chiang Rai’s new strip is a very tasty little number. I was so taken with it when I first saw it at the Challenge Cup Final a few weeks back that I almost bought one. Simple, clean, not overburdened with sponsor logos, and no silly swirls or frippery. Looks very good on the pitch too, a consideration which shirt designers often overlook.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Bangkok Glass

Glass have a track record of envy-inducing kits and despite their fortune teller-induced rebranding, 2018 is no exception. I am slightly biased towards this one being a Coventry fan as it is sky blue, but it is damned sexy, and is only let down by particularly obnoxious sponsor logos which clash horribly with an otherwise stylish design.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Royal Thai Navy FC

Navy may be T1’s most nondescript club – the recent match-fixing scandal is the only interesting thing to happen to them since I started following Thai football four years ago – but there’s nothing nondescript about their 2018 kit; it’s a cracker. Again I’m biased as they’ve gone for the classic St Etienne green-black-white trio, but it’s a very smart, clean shirt with just the two fairly inobtrusive sponsor logos. Hello sailors!

 

 

 

 

4. Suphanburi FC

Like Navy, Suphanburi are a club who probably bore even their own fans, but their 2018 kit is everything a shirt should be – smart, simple and respecting the traditions of the club. Warrix have come up with some excellent designs this season and this is the best of the lot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. Nakhon Ratchasima FC

Another winner from Warrix, The Swatcats look sleek & feline in this slinky orange number, with sponsor logos following the brand rather than ruining it. Only let down by some unnecessary background patterns, which are a pet hate of mine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Bangkok Utd

The Angels look rather divine in this smart all-red number. Although it’s somewhat overloaded with sponsor logos, it’s still one of T1’s most stylish kits, though the figure-hugging cut makes it a no-go area for most farang football fans. The black away shirt gives me serious kit envy, though the white away shirt with blue flecks looks like a urinal cake.

 

 

 

 

7. Prachuap FC

This season’s surprise package – 4th in the table as I write – also place highly in the kit rankings thanks to this bold design from Warrix. Would be higher were it not for the background pattern and the incongruous sponsor logo, but still a damn fine effort.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. Pattaya Utd

You can generally rely on the Dolphins to be well turned out and 2018 is no exception with this simple, straightforward Ari number. The rather silly cracked glass effect lets it down a bit, but that sky blue camouflage away shirt is an absolute belter – perfect for clandestine missions down Walking Street.

 

 

 

 

 

9. Buriram Utd

You know what you’re getting with a Buriram shirt – dark blue, big Chang logo in the middle, no fannying about. This year’s version is as classic – and as boring – as ever, though the collar makes it look more like a polo shirt and, again, there’s a rather pointless background effect going on. Full marks however for their round-necked AFC Champions League shirt which I would happily wear if it didn’t have a Buriram badge on it.

 

 

 

10. Port FC

By Port’s fairly lamentable standards, 2018’s shirt isn’t that bad. There’s only so much you can do with orange & blue stripes yet the design team at Grand Sport do insist on fannying about as much as they possibly can. The more orangey right-hand side is much better than the mess on the left, so why they didn’t make the whole shirt look like that is a mystery. But more than any other T1 shirt, it is ruined by sponsor logos, in particular that horrible big blue square on the front which completely obscures the shirt design; the bizarre black V in the collar; and the Air Asia logo that looks like it was thrown on at the last minute by a blind darts player.

 

 

 

 

 

 

11. Chonburi FC

An otherwise simple Nike template design, with all-white sponsor logos (can the FAT make this compulsory please?), let down by two things: some rather pointless, wishy-washy stripes, and the fact that Chonburi are charging 2200BHT a pop for them – more than they charge for a season ticket. That said, owning a new shirt is probably a more pleasurable experience than watching 17 Chonburi games, so maybe it isn’t such bad value after all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

12. Chainat FC

Cheating Chainat’s 2018 shirt, hard to track down online, seems to be based on the same Warrix template as Prachuap’s, but is ranked much lower for three good reasons – it’s pink, it’s Chainat, and they’ve almost copied Port’s “We Are the Legend” slogan from 2016, in an even more grammatically incorrect fashion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

13. Air Force Utd

Air Force have had some very nice kits in the past (2016’s Uruguayesque shirt being a particular favourite) but the 2018 effort – modelled here by Port legend Ekkapoom – isn’t one of them. Again it’s befouled by obtrusive sponsor logos, looks more like a polo shirt, and has a two-tone fade look that makes it appear as if it has been sent to a cheap backpacker laundry. The Poom deserves a lot better.

 

 

 

 

 

14. Muangthong Utd

Who’s this in the relegation zone? Why, it’s our old friends Muangthong. For their 2018 effort, Grand Sport have done a commendably half-arsed job, taking the template for Port’s 2017 strip (grandad collar included) and simply changing the colours. Which is about as much effort as such a foul garment deserves. I’d wander around Bangkok in a Make America Great baseball cap before I wore one of these.

 

 

 

 

15. Sukhothai FC

We’re really getting down to the dregs now and Sukhothai’s 2018 shirt is a shocker. Whether it’s the faded orange colour, the dated collar or the tacky flames at the bottom of the shirt, it’s a disaster all round, only slightly mitigated by tasteful application of sponsor logos. With 3 going down it’d be just about enough to keep them up, but sorry boys, it’s 5 this year so bye-bye.

 

 

 

 

16. Ubon UMT Utd

No surprise to see Ubon in the bottom 3, in either fashion or footballing terms. Last season’s kit was one of the worst in T1, and this year they’ve pulled it off again with what looks like the kind of shirt Albania’s 239th-ranked tennis player might wear. The gold stripes look like the shirt has been driven over by a car (a tempting proposition given their performance at Port last week), and bizarrely they appear to be sponsoring themselves. Surely there must be rules about that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

17. Ratchaburi Mitr Phol FC

Screaming “Ansells Bitter Sunday League 1987”, this monstrosity looks like it was designed using MS Paint. By someone who really hates Ratchaburi. Everything about it is horrible, from the sponsor logos on the shoulders to the huge, dated-looking Mitr Phol logo on the front. No wonder all their coaches quit after a couple of weeks. An effort which would normally condemn them to the wooden spoon, however…

 

 

 

 

 

18. Police Tero FC

Anyone wondering why FBT don’t seem to get many T1 shirt contracts these days need wonder no longer. This is truly horrific, and looks like they ran out of money and had to stitch together a shirt made up of half a dozen different old kits. Possibly the one shirt in this list which would benefit from having 27 sponsor logos slapped on top of it to hide the designer’s work, assuming there was a designer involved, which is unlikely. Police haven’t been made to look this bad since the Rodney King video.