The Netherlands will wear a unique and vibrant new away kit that combines performance innovation with design details from Dutch culture – unveiled at Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam by national team players Joël Veltman, Davy Klaassen and Jean-Paul Boëtius.
“The design of this away jersey is youthful and will inspire pride in Dutch players and fans,” said Martin Lotti Global Creative Director, Nike Football.
The new Netherlands jersey features an isometric grid pattern of interlocking chevrons that start at the top as bright blue and gradually become darker, ending as imperial purple at the hem.
The blue in the pattern signifies the Dutch royal family and the color of the cross that appears in their official flag.
This design also reflects the essence of Dutch football and the dynamic style of National Team Coach Louis van Gaal’s team, wherein each player subverts themselves to the team and intricate passing and movement conforms to a system.
To celebrate the 125th anniversary of the founding of the Royal Dutch Football Association, the kit features a striking new crest.
This impressive crest on the away jersey is an enlarged, orange lion that symbolizes the new era in Dutch football and the team’s core values of simplicity, honor and unity.
Beneath the crest is the Royal Dutch Football Association’s founding year of 1889, alongside 2014 to commemorate their 125th anniversary.
Inside the back of the neck is a pennant tab showcasing the crown that sits upon the lion’s head on the Association’s crest.
Nike also collaborated with the legendary Dutch graphic designer and typographer Wim Crouwel to create a font for the jersey’s names and numbers.
Crouwel used the back of the Holland away jersey as his canvas to specially create a modern font with an appealing retro aesthetic. The lines inside the numbers are reminiscent of the numbers famously seen in football in the 1970s. Each number also houses a small Royal Dutch Football Association crest at the bottom.
“As well as being comfortable and cool to play in, the new away kit really stands out,” said Dutch footballer Gregory van der Wiel. “I like the bright colors and I hope the fans will too.”
The new shorts are imperial purple. Simple and iconic, the fit is slimmer and more tailored to the body with a cut specifically designed to aid movement and comfort. The center back of the shorts features Nike’s signature laser vents to aid in cooling and allow for moisture management. The new away socks are also imperial purple.
The kit aids performance by helping regulate player body temperature over the course of a match. By using a combination of Nike Dri-FIT technology, mesh panels and laser-cut ventilation holes, designers are able to localize cooling where players need it most.
Nike Dri-FIT technology pulls moisture away from the skin to the outside of the garment where it evaporates quickly. Laser-cut ventilation holes and engineered mesh in key areas allow for increased breathability and airflow across the skin.
“By managing sweat and keeping the body cooler longer, players feel more comfortable, sweat less and perform better,” said Lotti.
In addition to helping players stay cool, the kit is made with a new dual-knit fabrication that incorporates cotton and recycled polyester for the best in moisture-wicking properties, while adding a softer feel and more flattering shape.
In line with Nike’s commitment to superior performance with lower environmental impact, the shirt, short — and for the first time in a national team kit, the socks — all feature fabric made from recycled plastic bottles (100 percent recycled polyester in the shorts, 96 percent recycled polyester in the shirt and 78 percent in the socks). Each kit is made using an average of 18 recycled plastic bottles. Since 2010, Nike has diverted almost two billion bottles from landfills, enough to cover more than 2,800 full-sized football pitches.
“Incorporating environmental sustainability is a key part of the design and development process for us,” said Lotti. “Our aim is to create a kit that performs for players and is good to the planet.”
Designers utilized three-dimensional body scans of elite footballers to collect data on the form of today’s players and identify an updated fit, improving comfort and allowing the body to move more naturally within the kit.
While looking at every element of the modern football kit, Nike designers even paid special attention to the kits’ socks. Combining athlete insights and research with new materials and fabrications, the Nike Elite Match Fit sock for 2014 features a sleeker fit specific to football. Strategically cushioned zones provide comfort and protection at the big toe and anklebones where the majority of impact occurs, while arch support locks down the foot to help prevent slipping. Material was also eliminated to enhance touch and decrease bulk, and flex grooves were added to the ankle and the top of the foot to prevent bunching.
The new Nike Pro baselayer is the lightest ever from Nike and features increased venting and breathability.
Players have a variety of Nike Pro baselayer styles for players to choose from. These are designed for the varying temperatures and conditions athletes will encounter in Brasil, which are expected to vary from high heat during mid-day matches, to much colder temperatures in the southern match locations during evening games.
Nike has redesigned its baselayer short for 2014 taking insights directly from some of the best players in the world.
“When we asked players to talk about the kind of protection they need during a match, they showed us scars and abrasions on their upper-back hip area from sliding,” recalled Lotti. “Several players showed us these same injuries so we set out to add more protection, while balancing the need for lightweight breathability.”
The result is the Nike Pro Combat Ultralight Slider Short. Featuring increased and adjusted abrasion protection zones to match the athlete’s sliding pattern, the short is also 20 percent lighter than previous versions and made with 87 percent recycled polyester. Weight was eliminated through the addition of mesh for increased breathability and cooling where the athlete generates heat.
The Netherlands away kit is available to pre-order from March 26 and available to buy in Nike stores and on nike.com from April 3.