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Home: Non League Football Information: History:
Why does the "away" team change kit?

 

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cope1
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May 9, 2012, 8:22 PM

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Why does the "away" team change kit? Can't Post or Reply Privately

Does anyone have any historical knowledge regarding why it is the 'away' team that changes colours in most football, at least in the UK?

In AFA football it's always the home team which makes much more sense to me but I'm interested to know the background.

Another, related question, would be 'why is the home team listed first?'. In US sports the home team is generally listed 2nd. Anyone know where the different conventions come from?


VP
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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I don't know about the kits but looking through The Times in the past you couldn't tell who the home team was unless they mentioned where the game was played. They'd usually list the results with the winning team first. Drawn games could be any way around.
I've got the results from Nov 20th 1897 in The Times open now as an example:

Bolton Wanderers beat Aston Villa (2-0), at Bolton
Notts Forest (yes, Notts Forest!) beat Stoke (2-1), at Stoke
Preston North End and Everton tied (1-1), at Preston
Sheffield United and Blackburn Rovers tied (1-1), at Blackburn.

I don't know when they changed to home team first in the results section.

**Edit**

Just had a look at the fixture section in the Saturday paper.
That's nearly all home team first but there are exceptions. Woolwich v Sandhurst was at Sandhurst for example.


(This post was edited by VP on May 9, 2012, 8:51 PM)


acmold
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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or


In Reply To
Does anyone have any historical knowledge regarding why it is the 'away' team that changes colours in most football, at least in the UK?

In AFA football it's always the home team which makes much more sense to me but I'm interested to know the background.

Another, related question, would be 'why is the home team listed first?'. In US sports the home team is generally listed 2nd. Anyone know where the different conventions come from?



Think there are a few leagues below step 6 where the home team has to changed, can't think of them off the top of my head but I know it has come up in my travels in the past.


PaulC
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May 9, 2012, 10:56 PM

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Re: [VP] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Even as late as 1930 (and quite possibly later) The Times showed results with the winning team first and the home team denoted by an asterisk

*Manchester City 3, Grimsby Town 1
Liverpool 2, *Bolton Wanderers 0


PhilT
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May 10, 2012, 10:18 PM

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Re: [PaulC] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Maybe standardisation of the results format was something to do with the rise of the football pools, to make coupons easier to check against a list of fixtures (1 point for a home win, 1.5 for an away win as I recall).


UKPunk
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Re: [PhilT] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To
Maybe standardisation of the results format was something to do with the rise of the football pools, to make coupons easier to check against a list of fixtures (1 point for a home win, 1.5 for an away win as I recall).

2 points for a non scoring draw and 3 for a scoring draw. 8 scoring draws (24 points) and you've won the jackpot.

On two occasions I got the 10 homes up. As I recall the second win was over 100.



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spaldingreg
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May 12, 2012, 6:09 AM

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Re: [PaulC] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Peterborough & District League is one where the home team has to change see the pictures of last Saturdays match at Pinchbeck United with the home side in blue & black not their usual red & black which was being worn by Alconbury



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AbbeySec
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Re: [spaldingreg] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Bedfordshire County Football League & Bedfordshire FA competitions are all Home team change, same in the Hertfordshire FA Cups too. Theory is that if there is a problem then the home team are going to have the ability to change rather than the away team although in theory any kit issues should be sorted out before the day.


John Treleven
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Re: [AbbeySec] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Home club changes shirts in Jersey


chrisby
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Jun 22, 2012, 9:54 AM

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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Don't know when it started to be the norm for the away team to change in football: in rugby (union) it has always been the home side changing if there was a clash, which does seem to be the more sensible way round. And when did sides start to wear an 'away kit' even when there wasn't a clash with their normal/home kit?

As far as home/away listings in papers go, there seemed to be no standardisation in early days. The Oxford Chronicle, for instance, just used to print "on the ground of the former/latter" after the match, or the name of the ground, for a long time, but by the early 1900s the fixture list regularly indicated the home side with an asterisk and later by a footnote saying "all matches to be played on the ground of the first-named team"...or words to that effect.


cope1
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Re: [chrisby] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

In baseball you have a home and away kit (or uniform, as it is known stateside). The home team always wears white while the visitors wear a colour - often grey. Most nowadays also have an 'alternative' uniform as well.

In football it's got to be contractual, i.e. the team is obliged to wear the change and 3rd kit X number of times. When I were a lad (way back in the 80s and 90s) you only wore a change if you needed to (although Arsenal often seemed to change to play Everton) but the changing times hit home for me about 10 years ago when I had a 'debate' with a youngster who claimed that the 'away kit' was worn for all away matches. While he was ultimately proved wrong it did occur to me momentarily that it might have been the case and I had not been keeping up with developments.


Part-Timer
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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I couldn't understand why England wore blue instead of white in their game against Sweden the other day. The only possibility that I came up with was that it was for the benefit of people with black and white televisions. I was even more bemused when France played Sweden a few days later; they changed from their usual blue shirts to white.Crazy


John Hansford
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Jun 22, 2012, 3:51 PM

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Re: [Part-Timer] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I believe that England changed their shirt for commercial reasons, not something my local side usually has to worry about!
I once asked a League Chairman why the FA needed a full time England manager and I was told that it was as much for commercial reasons as football ones, attending Sponsors events etc.



John Hansford


rainjar
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Jun 23, 2012, 8:11 AM

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Re: [chrisby] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To
....

As far as home/away listings in papers go, there seemed to be no standardisation in early days. The Oxford Chronicle, for instance, just used to print "on the ground of the former/latter" after the match, or the name of the ground, for a long time, but by the early 1900s the fixture list regularly indicated the home side with an asterisk and later by a footnote saying "all matches to be played on the ground of the first-named team"...or words to that effect.


Might well have developed as a convention to save newsprint or newspaper space. Each market developed its own convention.



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cope1
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Jun 24, 2012, 10:26 AM

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Re: [Part-Timer] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I doubt there are many black n white tellies left anywhere outside a museum these days, even in deepest, darkest Brazil.


Mishi
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Jun 25, 2012, 12:41 PM

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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

There are two reasons why we wear our away kit, instead of the Pink 'n' Blue, when there's no apparent clash.

Firstly, it's because there's been a game very close before it, & the kit wash hasn't been completed.
Secondly, it's simple 'wear & tear'. Allow the away kit a few times, & the home kit can stetch to three seasons, rather than two, thus saving the club money.



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Chris1963
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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To
Does anyone have any historical knowledge regarding why it is the 'away' team that changes colours in most football, at least in the UK?

In AFA football it's always the home team which makes much more sense to me but I'm interested to know the background.

Another, related question, would be 'why is the home team listed first?'. In US sports the home team is generally listed 2nd. Anyone know where the different conventions come from?



American sports (or at least, American Football and baseball) are sometimes said to be an allegory of US foreign policy ie; "We play by our own rules and you (the rest of the world) can't join in, so that we can call ourselves World Champions"


Ashton49Pieman
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Jul 2, 2012, 9:49 PM

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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

The discussions about changing kit has been interesting Certainly when I started watching in the early 1950s,any team could wear their nominated kits as they wished with certain restrictions but I was told that certain customs were normally observed as follows :-

1. The home team always named 1st - easiest to see where the match was being played

2. ONLY if there was a clash of colours (shirts) was it needed for either team to change kit - same shorts or socks did not require any changes.

3. In the case of a clash the Away team changed colours or wore plain white shirts or with collar and cuffs in club normal colours

4 All Black was only for Match Officials (ie Black shirts) colours were only ever worn as the uniform of Referee and Linesmen, although teams could wear Black/and White/Colour stripe/hoops shirts or Black shorts and socks

Obviously rules etc may have changed during the 60 yrs but there did seem to be a certain logic and regulation that was easy to follow. Maybe certain financial considerations apply now

If a change of kit was only required where there was a colour clash it did allow Home supporters to see most teams in their " traditional" kits rather than the somewhat monotonous All Yellow or Black so favoured by Away teams nowadays and used where ever possible the days. If it is necessary to change kits for every away match, a little more colour thought may not go amiss


(This post was edited by Ashton49Pieman on Jul 2, 2012, 10:00 PM)


cope1
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Re: [Ashton49Pieman] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I would prefer that clubs had away colours, not just whatever they chose to wear each season. Arsenal have, for most of my life, used yellow shirts and blue shorts as the change strip. Recently they have used all blue more often and, to my horror, WHITE shirts a few years back with maroon shorts. They also had a third kit one year which was maroon and blue hoops.

Generally I think Arsenal do it fairly well as they change colours are almost always yellow/blue or blue/blue. Other clubs change from season to season.

Mind you, I never buy the shirts so I'm probably not the person the manufacturers think of when deciding these things.


Ashton49Pieman
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Jul 3, 2012, 1:16 AM

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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I dont disagree entirely with that idea- just that the league my club plays in has about 15 clubs who all have an away kit of all yellow, but a different home kit from my team- A bit of variety on the eye!! In my much younger days pre match discussion always used to be " Nice kit they play in - is that their normal one? "

When my Ashton team play in Red/White halves, Black Shorts and Red socks and opponents play in say all Green when they are at home is it necessary to become 1 of the 15 teams playing away in all Yellow -especially when most of their supporters are decked out in Green - first thing we do before each match is to have a bet as to the opposition colours !!! We generally play in our Home kit unless a colour clash occurs and if away we change -to Navy/Sky Blue - thankfully All Yellow is only our 3rd choice kit

Perhaps I am just a traditionalist and recognise clubs mainly by their " House Colours" I understand your point but the Arsenal Red with white sleeves etc is how a general football follower automatically identifies them


(This post was edited by Ashton49Pieman on Jul 3, 2012, 1:24 AM)


John Treleven
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Jul 3, 2012, 7:53 AM

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Re: [Ashton49Pieman] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

All black for officials is still mandatory for the lower levels (step ? and below)

Jersey recently received a ticking off from the F.A. for allowing other colours in order for the officials to be clearly distingushable.

This was when clubs wearing dark blue were playing under floodlights.

No discretion permitted for the officials by the F.A., it is the players that must change.


cope1
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Re: [Ashton49Pieman] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To
Perhaps I am just a traditionalist and recognise clubs mainly by their " House Colours" I understand your point but the Arsenal Red with white sleeves etc is how a general football follower automatically identifies them

Don't misunderstand me - I don't want to see teams change unless its unavoidable. I just think that if they do change, the change kit should be almost as set in stone as the first kit.

When I started watching football in about 1986 (I was a bit behind having spent some years living in the US as a kid) it was a rare, and therefore special, occasion that teams changed kit. Also, I remember Arsenal always had a green goalkeeper's jersey except for one match against Plymouth in the League Cup where Rhys Wilmott (I think it was) wore blue. I was so excited before hand at seeing what colour the 'keeper would wear I can't even remember the result!

Perhaps there are some people (like us) who put particular stock in this kind of thing. One of my favourite parts of Star Wars was seeing a red/white R2-D2 or a silver C3-PO!


cope1
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Re: [John Treleven] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


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All black for officials is still mandatory for the lower levels (step ? and below)

~

No discretion permitted for the officials by the F.A., it is the players that must change.

The SAL have had a couple of problems with this. One club went out and bought a brand new set of very smart black kit without, apparently, reading the rule in the SAL or AFA handbooks telling them they weren't allowed to wear it.

Another thing I enjoyed as a kid was watching Scotland matches as the officials always changed colours because Scotland played in dark blue.


John Treleven
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Jul 3, 2012, 8:36 AM

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Re: [cope1] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

One of our "problems" is Jersey Scottish wearing their regular Scottish dark blue under lights

It now seems they will have to wear their change kit as the officials are not allowed to change.


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Re: [John Treleven] Why does the "away" team change kit? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To
All black for officials is still mandatory for the lower levels (step ? and below)

Jersey recently received a ticking off from the F.A. for allowing other colours in order for the officials to be clearly distingushable.

This was when clubs wearing dark blue were playing under floodlights.

No discretion permitted for the officials by the F.A., it is the players that must change.


I am not sure that this is correct. Whilst standard league rules state that clubs should not wear black because that is the colour that the officials wear, leagues are able to request a dispensation from the FA to amend this. However if they do so they will be required to supply all officials who operate in that league with an alternate kit (and probably two alternate kits as the first one may also clash with another strip) - and by supply they mean permanently, not a loan. Consequently leagues take the view that this is too expensive and stick with the standard rules. I suspect Jersey fell foul of the FA by going ahead without prior permission.

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