FA stand by new England kit amid St. George's Cross controversy with message to critics

FA stand by new England kit amid St. George's Cross controversy with message to critics

The Football Association have hit back at critics of the new England kit, which bears a multi-coloured St. George’s Cross.

The Three Lions will don the strip in the upcoming friendlies against Brazil and Belgium, as well as at this summer’s Euro 2024.

But the decision to include the English flag on the back of the collar featuring a design labelled “disruptive” by manufacturer Nike, with a red, blue and purple cross on a dark blue background, has led to a backlash from political figures and fans.

Prime minister Rishi Sunak has slammed Nike for “messing” with the St. George’s Cross while Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has likewise urged the FA to “reconsider”.

However, the FA have stood by the new kit in a statement released on Friday.

It read: “The new England 2024 Home kit has a number of design elements which were meant as a tribute to the 1966 World Cup winning team.

“The coloured trim on the cuffs is inspired by the training gear worn by England’s 1966 heroes, and the same colours also feature on the design on the back of the collar.

“It is not the first time that different coloured St George’s cross-inspired designs have been used on England shirts.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

“We are very proud of the red and white St George’s cross – the England flag. We understand what it means to our fans, and how it unites and inspires, and it will be displayed prominently at Wembley tomorrow – as it always is – when England play Brazil.”

The famous designer Peter Saville created an official special edition of the England kit in 2011, which featured the St George’s Cross in a variety of colours. The manufacturers behind that shirt, Umbro, also produced the flag in different shades of green on that year’s goalkeeper jersey.