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Forest launch limited edition third kit

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Once he stopped gazing lovingly at the latest blue third kit, David Marples got busy and wondered whether it was necessary. It wasn't. But it looks nice.

Richard Heathcote

With the news of the release of the limited edition Forest third kit, a dilemma raises its familiar face: not whether to purchase, but whether to care enough to be irritated by its existence.

The club, like many others, has a bit of form in this area. As recently as last season, there was the sexy little white number with blue trim and the lesser spotted but nonetheless notorious green effort with Labatt’s emblazoned on the front alongside a line resembling a jerky upward rising linear graph. The choice of green was more left field than a Billy Bragg and Tony Benn camping trip but blue? Blue?

However, like S Club 7, blue has been worming its way into our affections over the years and has almost become accepted as part of the Forest colours. Perhaps this is mainly down to Stanley Victor Collymore and Stuart Pearce smashing goals in all over the place back in 1994-95 as we romped to third place in the Premier League; none more memorable than those at Old Trafford.

We are certainly in a good place regarding strips at the moment with the white and red trim away kit winning approving nods from all and sundry. Most would accept either yellow or white as an away kit with blue as a third option. Of course, others would question the need for a third kit in the first place, especially parents of insistent children, or indeed, grown men with a propensity for buying every top ever produced for…er, you know, posterity and stuff.

We all know that they are pointless and a waste of time: we don’t need politicians to point out the bleedin obvious for us.It goes without saying that they are just another marketing ploy to get us foolish and loyally obedient fools to pump more of our borrowed wonga into paying the extortionate wages of those godless and reprehensible prima donnas parading around to no discernible impact, end or purpose. This much we know. Yet it doesn’t stop us from looking at the latest blue number with covetous eyes and mouthing out aloud in the hope that our loved ones might hear and take a hint, something like ‘ooooh, that looks nice,’ knowing full well that the only time it will be worn is for the occasional Tuesday night 5-a-side game or around the house when hoovering (just me? No matter. I’ll carry on regardless). Moreover, There is something alluring about any artifact having the hallowed words, ‘limited edition’ attached to it.

As many have pointed out, such a commodity is baying to find its spiritual home on EBay at an inflated price. This is a shame but certainly not one to get irate or angry about. After all, it takes quite a lot of effort to be in with a chance of getting your grubby little mitts on one of these things these days; if you’ve expended all that effort in doing so, do what you will with it (have a quick hoover around the house if you will…it’s quite liberating).

No. The real problem here lies in our pitiful performance while sporting such unfamiliar attire. Hard, fast and sexy data escapes me on this but put simply, we rarely seem to win in rare kits. Since this new blue number is to be given its catwalk waltz at the fittingly named New York Stadium against Rotherham United, my heart sinks at the prospect of us garnering anything but a quiet satisfaction at having paid so little for a pint of ale from South Yorkshire, never mind anything as prized as a football league point.

Football sold its soul long ago – another piece of overpriced merchandise shouldn’t be the thing to push us over the edge. The ubiquitous third kit is here to stay and maybe its limited availability spares us from the agonising decision of whether to attempt to justify the purchase of such an item. At least we should be thankful that it’s not like that legendary yellow vomit splattered effigy, as sported in he 1995-96 season. Here we are getting spanked at Old Trafford wearing the aforementioned cult kit.

Only the kit could be responsible for such a performance. Here’s hoping this new blue one will invoke the spirit of Old Trafford, 1994-95 and not the shambles of the year later.