Normally by this point in the year, many European clubs would have already revealed their jerseys for the new season, and we’d be eagerly awaiting the final few stragglers to give us a full picture of what the Premiership, Pro 14 and Top 14 was going to look like in 2020/21. But of course this is no normal year, and no normal season.
With Europe’s top leagues not resuming the 2019/20 season until next month, it could be some time before we get to see some cool new jerseys, but thankfully French graphic designer Romuald Berthe has given us something intriguing to get our teeth into instead.
In a project titled ‘Jerseys Without Sponsors, Utopia?’ Rouen-based self-confessed “rugby and design addict” Berthe has stripped all the teams of the 2019/20 Top 14 of their many, many jersey adverts and imagined what they could look like if they used this clean slate to really do something exciting design wise for each of the 14 clubs.
As you can see from the concepts above, the designs are bold, modern, and make great use of the uncluttered space of the jerseys to do something genuinely artistic – from Stade Francais’ Eiffel Tower motif, UBB’s stunning quartered design or the really out there Toulouse fingerprint pattern.
As rugby talks about stepping into a massively changed new post-COVID era, it shows us a glimpse of how interesting things could be were rugby jerseys not advertising billboards – an unrealistic notion perhaps, but a cool one nonetheless.
Check out all 14 of Romuald’s fantastic Top 14 designs here, and head over to his portfolio to check out some other cool sports redesign projects he’s undertaken – not least his design for RWC2019 x Manga project – and follow him on Instagram here.