Hello, and welcome to what will probably be one of the most controversial articles of my career!
If you follow me on Twitter, you’d know that I am a HUGE lover of football kits, and despite only really getting into them recently, I have already amassed quite a collection. In celebration of my 50th article for this lovely website, GrandOldTeam, I thought I would have a crack at ranking Everton’s Top 10 Kits of All Time.
These rankings are based mainly on design, a bit on iconicity, and a sliver on club success, all very subjectively from my own opinion.
In this list, I opted for a balance between which kits I personally love and which kits I know Evertonians love. I’ve also decided to try and find a balance between home kits and away/third kits because I think most of these lists made in the past have been dominated by the former, and understandably so.
Also, please note that I was born in 2000, so I’ve done my best to integrate both old and new kits into this list, but I’ve opted to include only modern kits, aka the ’80s and onwards and I’m almost certainly biased towards kits that we’ve worn since I’ve become a supporter.
Now, without further ado, here are, in my opinion, the Top 10 Everton Kits of All Time.
10. 2012/13 Away Kit
Where better to start than with the season that made me an Evertonian! This simple black and yellow number is really classy, in my opinion, as I am a sucker for clean black kits. Worn most notably by Marouane Fellaini and Nikica Jelavic, the 2012/13 away kit served David Moyes’ final season at the club well, as the Toffees secured a solid 63 points and a 6th place finish. From a design point of view, I think keeping the badge, swoosh, and sponsor all yellow creates great cohesion and contrast in the kit, and the all-black collar is boss. This is an austere yet elegant kit, and it’s a worthy inclusion to kick off this list.
9. 2018/19 Home Kit
Well, it was going to get controversial eventually… I personally think the 2018/19 home kit was the best home kit that Umbro provided us with during their 3rd stint as Everton’s technical partners from 2014-2020. The tri-color base design is really modern and sleek and I’m a big fan of the white Umbro diamonds on the end of the sleeve. I also love the almost rounded collar, which makes this shirt a little different from anything else we’ve had. It’s pretty hard to go wrong with a royal blue kit with neat white accents, and that’s exactly what we got. Overall, a very suitable Everton home kit.
8. 2015/16 Away Kit
This was the first Everton kit I ever bought, and being the little 15-year-old fanboy that I was, I of course got Barkley 20 on the back. While it may seem that I’ve picked this kit for personal reasons, I genuinely love the design of the kit, despite the suffering we endured that season. I’m a sucker for a good white and black away kit, but the grey stripes and socks really just make this one for me. I think it’s a fantastic kit and I wish we weren’t so crap during the season that we wore it.
7. 2019/20 Third Kit
I promise they aren’t all this recent. I promise. This third kit from last season was only worn twice, both in losses on the road at Arsenal and Manchester City, which I believe has led to its under-appreciation. Although it may seem black, the colorway is actually a dark navy with a lighter blue used for the badge, sponsors, and Umbro logo, which I think is brilliant. I also love the little design on the collar, even though I’m not quite sure what it represents. As a proud owner of this beauty, I’m confident in putting it this high, but I’m sure I’ll get some stick on Twitter for this inclusion.
6. 1985/86 Home Kit
Let’s be honest, this kit is a bit of an eyesore. I personally don’t really fancy it, but it is undeniably one of the most iconic kits in Everton history. “The white bib”, as it has been dubbed, was worn during the 1985/86 season, which fell between Everton’s two title wins in the ’80s. The Toffees finished second, just two points behind their neighbors across Stanley Park, whom they were also defeated by in the FA Cup Final. However, the kit became synonymous with Gary Lineker’s famed single-season at Goodison Park, in which the Englishman led the First Division with 30 league goals, and bagged 40 in all competitions for Howard Kendall’s side. In terms of design, this kit leaves a lot to be desired, but this list would be incomplete without it regardless.
5. 2020/21 Home Kit
Okay, I am definitely jumping the gun a little bit with this selection, but I can explain. This is my favorite kit we’ve had since I fell in love with this club almost 9 years ago, and now that we’ve won at Anfield wearing it, it has provided me with my best moment as an Evertonian. Hummel have started off their time as Everton’s technical partner with a bang, and I look forward to seeing what they have in store for us in the next few seasons. This year’s home kit is complete with the patented Hummel chevrons on the shoulders, as well as a subtle yet necessary diagonal pattern across the chest, and a simple yet elegant white hem on the sleeves. I own this kit with James 19 on the back, as any tasteful collector would, and it is my favorite kit to wear at the moment for obvious reasons. It more than likely does not deserve a spot this high in the rankings, but I’m going to put it here anyway. Sue me.
4. 1986-88 Home Kit
Now we’re getting to the creme de la creme, and where better to start than with the shirt worn by the most recent title-winning Everton side. The 1986/87 team dominated the First Division, pipping Liverpool to the title by a substantial 9 points behind 16 goals apiece from Adrian Heath and Trevor Steven in all competitions. This was the final season of Howard Kendall’s illustrious first stint as Everton manager, but the kit was also worn for the season after in which Colin Harvey managed the Toffees to a 4th place finish. The diagonal checkerboard design of this kit in two different shades of blue is absolutely fantastic, and the ’80s badge, as well as the NEC sponsorship, are just as if not more iconic than the kit itself. There’s no doubt that this is one of the greatest Everton kits ever, and putting it as low as 4th may even be a bit harsh.
3. 1994-96 Away Kit
I’ve seen this masterpiece labeled as the WORST Everton kit of all time, and I’m simply not having it. It’s absolute nonsense, and I’m looking at you, Toffee TV, for saying such heretical things about such an amazing kit. I’ve recently purchased this bad boy with Ferguson 9 on the back, and I can assure you that these pictures do not do this kit justice. The detail on this shirt is glorious in person, and it has immediately become the show-piece of my entire kit collection. The shorts, I’ll admit, are a bit questionable, as they probably should have just gone all-black or all-white, but the shirt, oh the shirt, is nothing short of magnificent, and there’s nothing any of you can say to change my mind. What a kit.
2. 1983-85 Home Kit
This kit is so glorious that there aren’t even any good images on Google of the original, so I’ve had to settle for the Score Draw replica with a missing Le Coq Sportif logo. It was worn firstly in the 1983/84 season, in which Everton won the FA Cup over Watford, ending their 14-year trophy drought and marking the beginning of the Club’s most successful era, in which they won 8 major honors in the next 4 years. The 1984/85 Everton team was unquestionably the greatest in our club’s history, winning the First Division over Liverpool by a monumental 13 point margin, along with winning the European Cup Winner’s Cup, and the Charity Shield, as well as reaching the FA Cup Final which we lost 1-0 to Manchester United in extra time. Worn by the likes of Sheedy, Sharp, and Gray, this kit was not only donned by the best of Everton Football Club but is also an absolutely worldie of a kit all on its own. I’m sure many of you are surprised that I haven’t put this #1, and understandably so. Legendary is an understatement.
1. 1988-91 Home Kit
Sure, Everton did not win a single piece of silverware in this kit, but look at it. Bloody look at it. I warned that design was the most important factor in these rankings, and the design of this kit is so far beyond the rest that it has to take the top spot. The pattern, the color, the badge, the sponsor, the collar… All of it is about as close to perfection as is humanly possible. It even makes Martin Keown look beautiful! This is the kit of my dreams, and I can’t wait to use my expendable income to purchase it for a near un-justifiable amount in the future. Although it may not have brought success with it, this is undeniably the greatest kit in the history of Everton Football Club, in my opinion. It’s simply spectacular. Give whoever designed this a Nobel Peace Prize. Different class.
And so, there is my list of the Top 10 Everton Kits of All Time. I’m sure that you lot, especially those on the older side, will have VERY different opinions than I and I welcome all *respectful* scrutiny and disagreement! Feel free to comment on this article or contact me on Twitter @ParrettGost to let me know what you think! It has been a pleasure to cover the Toffees this season thus far for this fantastic website, and I’m looking forward to what the future holds for my writing career, GrandOldTeam, and our great football club. Thank you all for reading, and as always, Up the Toffees!