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Template history - adidas diamond 1994

Used by the German national team and Bari, among many others, it defined a new era for the brand's jerseys

Template history - adidas diamond 1994 Used by the German national team and Bari, among many others, it defined a new era for the brand's jerseys

Football jersey templates are not always loved by fans, because they support an idea of seriality that does not make the work made for each team special by leaning on a prepackaged template. But at the same time they encapsulate the spirit of an era in a design, becoming icons over the years regardless of the players who wore it and despite the controversy they may have initially sparked. 

Among them is certainly the template launched by adidas for the 1994 World Cup for the jerseys of the German national team, then defending champions, distinguished by a pattern on the shoulders composed of series of rhombuses intersecting with each other. Three rows for each of the flag's colors, fading into the white that has always distinguished the Mannschaft's playing jersey. A revolutionary kit, it followed in quick succession one of the most beloved by fans and collectors namely the one worn during the 1990 European Championship and characterized by the broken band running horizontally across the chest.

The then West Germany took the field for the first time with a jersey that broke the usual monochrome with a geometric flash and changed the jerseys aesthetic throughout the 1990s. But that rupture created a new light in the templates used by the German brand, which from that moment on decided to be bolder and bolder in its designs. And in particular the jerseys always created for the German national team followed that decision, taking the resulting risks and criticism. 

The diamond template compared to its predecessors was used in full force by adidas and from 1994 for the following years was on the jerseys of both national and club teams. Some of these soon fell into oblivion, others became among the most celebrated ever worn by such teams but for a brief moment adidas' design covered five continents and endless leagues, from the Lithuanian national team to Olympique Lyon, from Beşiktaş to River Plate's away version. In Italy, the jersey we all remember linked to this design is, of course, the one Bari worn during the 1994/95 season in Serie A and distinguished by the Wuber sponsor's logo and the biancorosso cockerel without the shield. 

In fact, one of the peculiarities of such an imposing design especially on the shoulders of the jersey was that it required all the technical and commercial sponsor logos to be lowered, something that would no longer be possible now. Just look at the stunning Club America jerseys with the adidas logo tucked underneath between this cascade of colors and the iconic Coca Cola sponsor, while the team crest was set in the center of the pattern like a diamond in a crown. Those were indeed different years, with fewer restrictions related to jersey design, and brands took advantage of this to make more creative and graphic designs. 

During the same period, in fact, adidas launched two other highly successful templates, both of which had a strong geometric impact. The first with two vertical stripes made from the same rhombuses here placed horizontally and made famous by the jersey worn at USA 94 by Spain, the second with the enlarged adidas three stripes sticking out either on the shoulder or from the bottom edges for a template that was modified by the German brand to fit various kits over the years. But none had the aesthetic and discussed impact of this diamond pattern, which gave a new dimension to the possibilities of jersey designs.