Banbridge NI fan starts petition to change ‘horrendous’ shirt

Players model the new Northern Ireland shirt which has been met with dismay by many fans.
Players model the new Northern Ireland shirt which has been met with dismay by many fans.

One Northern Ireland supporter from Banbridge has taken matters into his own hands after the country’s shirt for Euro 2016 was branded ‘horrendous.’

Ian McKinney was so disappointed when the NI kit was unveiled on Monday that he started a petition to ‘force the IFA and Adidas to change’ the design.

And he’s hopeful he might get his wish as, not even 24 hours later, the petition has topped 4,700 signatures and is gaining momentum by the minute.

“The IFA have already said in newspaper quotes that it won’t be changing but other than that they have not reacted at all to the backlash,” said Ian. “I am hopeful that they might consider using this kit for the upcoming qualifying campaign but get something different for the Euros themselves.”

If the kit is not changed for the finals though, the IFA will have lost at least two sales from Ian himself and the kit suppliers, many more.

“I had planned to buy two,” he said, “One to wear and one to keep as a memento. I won’t be buying this shirt and in fact I don’t think I’ll ever buy anything from Adidas ever again. Not unless they change it.”

When the shirt was unveiled, Northern Ireland fans took to social media to voice their displeasure, while Ian at first couldn’t believe his eyes.

“A friend sent me a picture of it in a text message and I thought he was winding me up,” he told the ‘LEADER,’ “or that it was a training kit or something. He then sent a link to the Adidas page and I just couldn’t believe my eyes. It was just so ugly. Sometimes kits grow on you the more you see them but this one actually gets worse the more you look at it.

“Aside from the fact that the IFA could have cashed in massively on a good quality shirt, we deserved something decent and standard for our first appearance at a European Championships. This was most definitely NOT the time to experiment with three different shades of blue and a stupid big stripe. We all wanted a shirt we could wear with pride around France - this is most definitely not it.”

The Banbridge man, now living in Birmingham says he was “surprised at how many people were willing to take the time to put their feelings into action” by signing the petition, available by clicking here.

The Leader has contacted the IFA for a reaction to the gathering pace of the petition and is awaiting a response.