The lights at the Allianz Stadium cut out, and the music swelled. A small patch in the middle of the field seemed to glow in the darkness. The center circle started to pulse and ripple. And then the grass appeared to getas if it were nothing more than a tablecloth. Three “History. Passion. Lols.” The extravagant buildup did not seem to match the occasion. Juventus was at home to Genoa that night, a run-of-the-mill Serie A game. It was late October 2019, much too early in the to be decided or a trophy to be won. However, what mattered was not what Juventus was was playing in.
That night, traditional bianconero stripes and the disruptive touches that had made Palace a streetwear phenomenon. The team’s logos and the player’s numbers were in the acidic green. Toward the bottom, the stripes started to pixelate. The jersey was greeted as a masterpiece, but Juventus would never wear it again. When Ronaldo and his teammates took to the field against Torino a few days later, they were back in their regular uniforms. It did not matter. , the Palace jersey came online — or, as the streetwear world would put it, dropped.and his teammates would showcase a special edition jersey, designed in collaboration with its apparel partner, Adidas, and Palace, the maverick British skate and streetwear brand. The design toyed with the History and passion of Juventus, incorporating the team’s
It sold out in 12 hours.
Soccer goes pop
Afewf years earlier, Juventus held a lavish reception at the Museum of Science and Technology in Milan. The guest list included players past and present and pop-culture fixtures like Giorgio Moroder, the pioneering music producer, and the model and actress dominance in Serie A. However, it risked being left . To remain competitive, it needed to close the revenue gap on clubs like Barcelona, , and Manchester United, its chairman, Andrea Agnelli said. To do that, he was convinced, Juventus had to become “more pop.”. The party was arranged to herald the club’s awn of a new era Its team was in the middle of an unmatched period of success on the field, establishing
He is not the only executive in European soccer to have that thought. In 2018, fans lined up around the block outside the Parc des Princes to get their hands on the first drop of a collaboration between Paris St.-Germain and Jordan Brand, a subsidiary of Nike’s primary apparel partner. Earlier this , Arsenal unveiled a partnership with 424, a streetwear brand based in Los Angeles. As with the audience for Juventus’s collection with Palace, the core market for these collaborations is not the club’s fans. It is not even necessarily, fans of the sport. The groups are not intended to be worn as soccer products or as declarations of loyalty to a team; the tie-ins are not, as they are often presented, attempts by Europe’s insatiable superclubs to sell more tickets or pick up more fans.
“A lot of thethose P.S.G. Jordan shirts will not care about the team’s league position,” said Jordan Wise, a founder of Gaffer magazine and the creative agency False 9. “Many of them may not even like football.” That is precisely their value to clubs: an untapped market, not subject to the vicissitudes and tribalism that affect soccer fans. “Working with streetwear brands access to a completely different space,” Wise said. “But to do that, they have to think and look different: less like clubs and more like sportswear brands.”