You may notice that this pin-striped beauty from 1983/84 is also the shirt in the logo of The Goldstone Wrap. I bought it from Phil Shelley of Old Football Shirts.
It was an updated version of the elegant number that Brighton wore at the 1983 FA Cup Final. If you look very closely at images from the Final against Manchester United, you can see that the V-neck and shirt cuffs of the Brighton players were plain white. By the start of the 1983/84 season, however, a very smart thin blue and red trim was added by adidas, as you can see here.
There are some other lovely touches to the shirt, such as the red pinstripe running through the badge behind the seagull on the crest. The pinstripes also ran through the cut out letters of ‘Brewery,’ following the sponsorship deal clinched with Phoenix Brewery in October 1983. Before the deal, Albion had started their return to Division Two sponsorless, as the three year deal with British Caledonian Airways had expired at the end of 1982/83.
‘FA Cup Finalist 1983’ is proudly added under the crest. Of course, the classic three stripes running down the sleeves for that vintage Adidas vibe and the sponsor’s logo, crest and manufacturer’s logo are very tastefully balanced together. One surprising aspect of the shirt is that it is made of cotton rather than polyester. In 1983/84, the shirt was usually worn with white short and blue socks, and it received national exposure in January 1984, when ‘The Big Match Live’ broadcasted Brighton’s famous 2-0 victory over Liverpool in the FA Cup, with Eric Young, Steve Penney and Tony Grealish giving Liverpool a torrid time. It may have helped that they were wearing a bit of #kitporn as classy as this!
My second favourite Albion kit of all time, just behind the 85/86 adidas classic. I wore my Albion 83 kit at Hillsborough last season, bit tight on me now but still in use after 30 years! Aesthetically I prefer the 84/85 one with the sponsor in all capitals, but this one is special because it commemorates the Cup Final, even if it is grammatically dubious (it still annoys me) in that it refers to Albion as an it, we’re a we, not an it! It is FinalistS!!! By the way – any plans to feature classic Albion tracksuits? The Cup Final one and the one before, with white sleeves, will never be surpassed. Where do all these garments go? Surely someone still has an 83 cup final tracky, but you never see them???
That’s a great idea to cover the various tracksuits that Albion have had down the years. Oh yes, the navy one with white sleeves and, I think, British Caledonian Airways, on the back. I will add it to the list… 🙂
I am putting a large boys 83/84 top on ebay later today if anyone is interested