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David Ginola has worn more hot shirts than you’ve had hot dinners. So many, in fact, that it’s nigh on impossible to pick out a favourite 10, let alone whittle it down to a top 5. On that basis, the rules have officially been bent – you’re getting a summary of Ginola shirts from 5 periods of his career, rather than just 5 kits.



Close your eyes and picture it – late ‘80s, French Riviera, afternoon sun on your face, carafe of red and a pack of Gitanes at your disposal. Your local team, Toulon, are holding their own in the French top flight, and there’s a young, tall, dashing attacker with a tight mullet, dazzling both defenders and onlookers.

A young Ginola struck gold (or bright yellow to be precise) with his first few shirts in professional football. That maillot jaune just seems apt for a team from a region famed for its sunshine. In the 87/88 season, Ginola’s last in his local area, the colour scheme was flipped to give blue centre stage in one of that season’s strips which probably takes my vote as favourite DG Toulon number and sees him leave the club on a shirt high.

Whichever kit Davey wore in Toulon, the colours were loud and proud, but those oversized shirt sponsors synonymous with the era of French footy were even more so. I’m also taken by the unusual Toulon club crest – simply the club’s name housed in part of a two-tone sash coming over the left shoulder.

Image Credit: VintageFooty

Paris Part 1

Ginola’s second club was Racing Club de Paris, or Matra Racing, or Racing Paris 1, or Racing Club de France depending on which day of the week you were supporting them. When he joined, he walked straight into some late ‘80’s Adidas trefoil magic, but also into some rugby-looking shirts that oddly seemed to work, or maybe he’s the one working them? His first home shirt is a beauty, an Argentinian Pumas’ base of sky blue and white hoops, with a plunging V-neck and floppy collar hybrid. It’s brought together a treat by the thick navy-blue band on each sleeve that matches the club crest and Adidas logo, punctuated further by the brutal Matra sponsor across the chest.

In Dave’s second season the sponsor had changed but the tradition hadn’t, with new sponsor Loto Sportif maintaining the seemingly mandatory massive font size. The colour scheme also remained, but the hoops were replaced by a white band around the midriff of a sky-blue shirt, and then a further, solitary thin white line just below it. In this season, it was the away strip that really caught my eye – same design as the home, but the body of the shirt in a deeper blue with the sky blue used for the band. Sponsor in white, collar in white, Adidas 3 stripes (all the way) down the sleeve in white. Lovely job.

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Paris Part 2

After a couple of years in Brittany with Brest, Ginola returned to the capital to turn-out for Paris Saint-Germain, where, frankly, his shirt collection got completely out of hand. It would go on to be defined by one brand (and ultimately one designer) and a million sponsors, but the early outings of his PSG career saw Ginola don the club’s late Adidas-made RTL-sponsored shirt which is a real link to the club’s past – clean blue and red segments, no fluff, familiar famous French sponsor.

Enter Nike, and enter Drake Ramberg. The next few seasons are all about this now-fabled collaboration that were at the forefront of football shirt design development in ‘90s Europe. Also enter, boatloads of sponsors… DG seemingly wore dozens of sponsor combinations during his time at PSG, some for league, others for cup, others in Europe. All massive, all slapped across the front (and sometimes back) of the shirt, whether they suited the shirt or not. Sometimes 2 at a time. Sometimes with sleeve sponsors thrown in for garish garnish. A shirt collector’s dream/nightmare depending on your viewpoint.

For the home shirts, the established red centre panel and white pinstripes flanked by blue is generally an ever-present, barring the shirts from ‘92 & ‘93 that fade the colours into one another with some thinner red verticals. For the away efforts there’s a bit of license and a bit more jazz as a result. The best example is probably the 92/93 Nike away shirt – plain white body, red hybrid V-neck/floppy collar with white dashes as trim, then the deliciously mesmeric blue patterned sleeves. Seek out the long-sleeved version to get truly lost in them, brought back to earth with feather-light touch by cuffs that match the collar. Proper chef’s kiss gif stuff. The red Nike logo, club crest, and Commodore sponsor logo all match the white/red/blue scheme so nothing looks out of place. My favourite version is the one without the additional Tourtel sponsor, with the Commodore logo straight across the chest instead of arched.

The 94/95 season was where one of the Ramberg classic templates hit the Paris streets, and, of course, Ginola was rolling in that, too. Both home and away are the same design with alternating colour schemes, but what a design. It’s pretty simple in the main – stick to what works for the majority – those segments are there with their pinstripes for pronunciation, but let’s face it, we’re here for the collar. As you follow it around the neck it’s a crew, then it looks like it’s dropping into a V, but then a straight horizontal line cuts it off giving it a flat bottom edge, tickling your gullet. It works because it’s unusual and it stands out – 3 little stars and coordinated trim make sure of that, and provide a suitable little home for the Nike logo.

As a non-Ginola-related aside, do check-out the ‘keeper kits that Bernard Lama was wearing for PSG during this period.

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L’ange du Nord-Est

In ’95 Ginola swapped Bastille Market for the Bigg Market, as Newcastle brought his Gallic charm on and off the pitch to Britain. The Adidas/Newcastle/Newcastle Brown shirts from the 95/96 season are odd but original contraptions; that’s why I like them and why they’ve stuck with me years later. They’re massive, they look too heavy, the Adidas stripes don’t start until after the shoulder, and you’re only getting the Adidas name written on your chest rather than a trefoil or equipment logo. The away shirt is also more rugger than a lot of rugger shirts with it’s blue and purple hoops. But I love them, and I think it’s the collar that’s captured my heart.

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It’s that revised logo that helps make the Newcastle 96-97 away shirt that Ginola floated around St James’ Park in one of the unsung Premier League gems. The body is bluey/silvery mesh-looking subtly-striped fayre from Adidas, but the makers really earn their corn with the collar and matching band around the middle. The collar is a massive black V-neck with Adidas 3 stripes in white – think elasticated cricket jumper collar.

During Ginola’s time at Newcastle, Bobby Robson apparently wanted to sign him for Barcelona but with no joy. I thought you should know. I’ll leave you to imagine DG parading around the Camp Nou in some late ‘90s Barca gear in your own time.


Les Bleus brother

Let’s be honest, if you play for France at any point there’s a good chance you’ll be donning something sweet, especially if you popped-up in the 40-year Adidas/France era. Ginola only managed 17 caps over a handful of years (for well-trodden reasons), but true-to-form still got involved in some sizzling Adidas/France home/away action.

His debut was made in 1990 in an all-time classic white away shirt. Clean, quiet torso, then a party going on hosted by the shoulder panels. French Tricolor Adidas stripes on the peak, blocks of blue over the collar bone and red under the ‘pits, and then 3 red parallelograms staggered diagonally down each side of the chest. It’s a design so bold that stuff has to get out of the road for it – Adidas trefoil moves up a little, FFF crest down a little, but no harm done.

The Adidas templates used in the 92/93 shirts are classics of their time, used by nations and clubs alike – bold, block colour body with subtle striping, then 3 slabs of colour draped over each shoulder, of course in the colours of the Tricolor in this case.

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That shirt may not hold the fondest memories for French fans and Ginola in particular, given how their qualification for USA ’94 ended, but our man was still around for a little while longer, and long enough to roll-out in another classic Adidas template that took him up to his final France cap in ’95. Again, all the expanse is reserved for the trim, with the body of the shirt doing a noble job of providing a sturdy canvas. Whilst we’ve got Tricolor 3 stripes down the shoulders (and matching trim on the collar), the eye is immediately drawn to the 3 vertical stripes of little diamonds down the right-hand side, the again provide some Tricolor action but this time in a dazzling fashion. Like its predecessor, keep the design but swap the blue body for a white one for the away version. Both are beauties.


Brest of the rest

I mean, he’s done alright for himself, hasn’t he, our Dave, with that shirt career? Even still, he’s danced in a few other delights that it’d be remiss of me not to mention in dispatches.

In-between his 2 spells in Paris, Ginola spent a couple of years in Brest, and unsurprisingly looked resplendent in their white and red ensembles. The first shirt he wore there was a basic Adidas number with the deepest of deep red Vs, but it was the shirts made by household name Izoard that stand-out to me – white shirts, couple of red slashes across the arms, floppy white collar and a block red triangle cutting it off at the la pomme d’Adam. There are 2 shirts in this vein that differ slightly only in colour of font used and sponsor, including food giant Eurest more famed for their Marseille shirt links, but both carry the same pièce de resistance – the Brest crest. The words ‘Brest Amorique’ in large type, with a football hurtling above it powered by a bunch of lightning strikes. Super stuff.

Later in his career, after King Kenny didn’t fancy Duke David at Newcastle, our hero rode south for a couple of seasons at Tottenham Hotspur which coincided with Spurs finishing their affair with Pony and HP in favour of one last fling with the ex, Holsten.

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Unfortunately, though, as his career on the pitch wound down, so did his luck with the shirts. His spell at Aston Villa ran head-on into some confusing Diadora and NTL-based lack of effort from Villa, and the less said about the busy Puma Everton One2One shirt with the massive crest, the better. Rest assured though, Dave looked better in those shirts than you or I ever would.

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