New third kits: Manchester United, Chelsea, Real Madrid, AC Milan, Bayern Munich
Manchester United, Chelsea, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and AC Milan all have new third-kit looks this season, and they were unveiled by Adidas on Friday.
The Manchester United third kit is meant to tie to the club’s history as a local railway workers’ team by giving us a mostly white strip with black accents pulled from the city of Manchester’s coat of arms, which features a “worker bee.” Adidas has incorporated the symbolism into the new kit, which will debut July 30 against Galatasaray. The Red Devils will break out the new third kit again on Aug. 14 against Bournemouth.
Chelsea will go all white for its new third kit, complete with an embossed lion on the sleeve. The white motif has remained a central feature of the club’s kits since 1905 and has been worn in some of the club’s biggest matches over the last 100-plus years. The new version, which will debut on Aug. 20 in a game against Watford, also has three stripes on the side panel in Chelsea blue and a two-color crest.
The new black third kit for AC Milan moves the stripes on the sleeve to the side of the jersey to allow designers to get creative with the sleeves in the form of a white spray-paint effect that pays tribute to the Italian flag.
The black and purple combination Real Madrid will wear as its third kit this year comes with an embroidered badge to celebrate 11 Champions League titles. The design etched across the shoulders depicts the route between Santiago Bernabéu and Cibeles, where Real Madrid celebrated title wins.
For Bayern Munich, a fresh third kit offers up white with silver accents while allowing for a burgundy collar. Moving stripes off the sleeve to the side panel of the kit made room for a subtle diamond pattern on the sleeves, also echoed in the center of the club's crest, the same pattern that appears on the flag of Bavaria.
Tim Newcomb covers sports aesthetics—stadiums to sneakers—and training for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.