Getting shirty: Russia refuse to wear new Adidas kit because manufacturer ‘got flag the wrong way round’
The Russian national side and German kit-maker unveiled team’s new red home strip for next year’s European Championships at a glitzy ceremony last week.
Stanislav Cherchesov’s men, who have already qualified for the European showpiece, were due to wear the kit for their final two group games, against Belgium on Saturday and San Marino on Tuesday.
But disgruntled players, staff and fans appear to have put the kibosh on those plans – specifically due to the coloring of the sleeves.
According to reports in Russia, there is anger over the current design which features a red shirt with a blue and then white trim to finish the sleeves.
In contrast to the Russian tricolor – which has white at the top followed by blue and then red – players and staff are said to be angry that the design in its current form looks like the Serbian flag instead of the Russian version.
The Russian Football Union announced this week that the team would stick to the current kit for the qualifiers against Belgium and San Marino, amid reports they are trying to resolve the issue with Adidas and could even end their association with the manufacturer.
PR staff from the German giants told Russian media that the national football authorities themselves were involved in the design process. The company has also said that the upside-down flag was deliberately designed so that it would turn the right way up when players and fans raise their arms in celebration.
The shirts have already gone on sale in Russia, but for now, the players won’t be wearing them – and there will be plenty of fans demanding their money back should the design be changed.
Russia, who sit second in Group I, face leaders Belgium in St. Petersburg on Saturday, before meeting minnows San Marino away three days later.Also on rt.com Russia crush 10-man Cyprus to book spot at Euro 2020 (VIDEO)