The rumors are true: The shirt accidentally leaked by the auto-generated confirmation of a promotional is the official away kit for New York City FC.
The orange-on-orange-on-orange scheme with a lighting bolt down the middle and an indigo fade down the left isn’t like any other shirt in MLS. We’ll even venture that few people outside of the design atelier at the ADIDAS headquarters in Herzogenaurach, Bavaria, saw this one coming.
The shirt is now available for sale at the MLS Store.
As we reported yesterday, the shirt isn’t the blaze orange you see when woodcock season rolls around—that color is reserved for NYCFC’s classically handsome training kits. The shirt is dividing supporters who desperately wanted an orange kit, just not this orange. Others are loving it. The lightening bolt seems be a reference to The Third Rail, the supporter’s group that's the beating heart of NYCFC fandom, while the looks to be a reference to the favored color of Los Templados, which was just formally named as the second supporter’s group in the history of the club.
Officially named the “Volt Kit,” the internets christened it the Bowie Kit in homage to the rock god’s Ziggy Stardust days. We’re partial to the Shazam! Kit here at Hudson River Blue, but we’ll bow to the wisdom of the crowd.
It’s a maximalist look in a year when many teams introduced minimalist designs with subtle details. Some NYCFC fans on Twitter are voicing their support for a second kit that grabs your eyeballs: The club has a classic sky-blue home shirt, so why not mix it up with the away design?
The only other shirt introduced this year that comes close to Bowie Kit’s razzle-dazzle is the Heritage Rose Kit of MLS Cup rival Portland Timbers. Still, they are very different breeds. While that shirt has the air of high fashion, with an abstracted rose print that could be found on a dress in the pages of Vogue, the Bowie Kit feels more confrontational, almost like a dare: Do you have what it takes to wear me?
We’re pleased to note that the shorts are solid orange, as are the socks. The accessories are nicely done.
The uniform brings to mind the FC Barcelona kit of 2012-13, which had a yellow-to-orange fade that you might find on a vintage Le Creuset enameled cast iron Dutch oven for sale on eBay.
Both that Barcelona team and Le Creuset are indestructible: As Classic Football Shirt notes, Barcelona won the title with these kits. Not a bad precedent to follow.