Shirt Heaven or Hell – from the original Doctor Allam

21 Mar

Coventry City visit Brentford tomorrow, with the Bees only a point adrift from the top of League One following a set of recent results which have gone very much in our favour. And with Wolves due to play at Sheffield United in the early kick off, by the time our second half begins Brentford will know exactly how significant three points, should we get them, will be

I’m very much excited about our game and the visit of Coventry City – a side I’ve always had a soft spot for. Growing up in the late 70s they were always a top flight outfit and, very much, a household name.

In my eyes this was as much for their status as some of the more unique kits they sported. Even now, I don’t know if these qualify as a mark of genius or insanity but you can’t deny they are eye catching.

The Admiral away kit from the end of the 70s, in chocolate brown with piping that continued from the shirt all the way down the shorts is often voted one of the worst kits of all time. A tad harsh, coming from decade that fashion is universally accepted to have bypassed.

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Is it really deserving of its reputation?

However, it was the 81-84 home kit, that really takes the biscuit as Managing Director Jimmy Hill (yes, him) made Hull City AFC’s Doctor Assem Allam look like a rank amateur in the rebranding stakes.

Coventry had just announced the football league’s first club sponsorship deal with local car giants, Talbot. In a bid to work around the (then) ban on shirt advertising, Hill tried to get the team renamed Coventry Talbot.

Not surprisingly, this move was rejected so, instead, he simply had a home shirt designed that featured their ‘T’ logo as an integral part of the design. It was immediately banned from television.

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Hull’s Doctor Allam has nothing on Hill

Getting back to things Brentford related, I’ve used this column to big up our favourite BBC London and sometime Beesplayer man before. It’s here if you want to see it and I won’t overly repeat myself.

However, whilst trawling the interweb this morning I have discovered something (below) which has set my mind racing as to the potential possibilities. Who wouldn’t want a promotional set of postcards, inspired by the sayings of the commentating legend?  We all have our favourites, and no away game to some God forsaken Northern outpost would be complete for Beesplayer listeners without ‘Tea and a wee’ or ‘Our friends at radio’

And whilst the modern day Billy Reeves has an obvious namesake, who would fill the shoes of his versatile companion … the girl with the rubber face?

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