Italy get elegant marble makeover with first jerseys of new Adidas kit deal


More than four decades since they last collaborated, Adidas have announced that they will be designing and supplying Italy's kits again in a new deal with the Italian Football Federation (FIGC).

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And they have wasted little time by also unveiling new home and away jerseys for the men's and women's senior national teams as well as the country's youth, futsal, beach soccer and esports teams.

The launch campaign called "La Ricera" ("The Search") includes a short promo featuring Azzurri goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, Azurre midfielder Martina Rosucci and 2006 World Cup winner Alessandro Del Piero, in which a young fan embarks on a treasure hunt through a magical forest in search of the new home jersey.

The 2023-24 kits take their design inspiration from marble, a natural material prized for its grandeur and resilience which was used to build dozens of ancient sites and monuments of historic importance all over Italy.

The handsome home shirt is blue with a subtle trim of the country's tricolore flag down each flank. It also features a bespoke design woven into the fabric, intended to represent chisel marks made in marble by craftspeople working with the raw material. The word "Italia" can also be found on the collar, with the typography again designed to look like Roman carvings.

The corresponding away jersey is predominantly off-white with distinctive dark blue and gold "veining" that is quite literally marbled all over the torso -- a far cry from the formulaic white, red and green alternate uniforms designs of recent years.

In fact, the marble pattern is reminiscent of the effect Adidas used for the 2020-21 Arsenal away kit to pay homage to the grand marble entrance halls at their old Highbury stadium.

As well as the playing kits, there is also a full range of accompanying training and streetwear apparel. The most interesting offering is probably the official prematch warmup shirt which has the green, white and red of the national flag recreated in large marble swirls from sleeve to sleeve.

Having suffered through several underwhelming Italy kits in the recent past (2022's egregious checkerboard design, anyone?) it's reassuring to see European football's most stylish nation regaining a foothold in the aesthetic stakes.

After the men's team failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup, they will be hoping that this new era of rebirth and restoration extends to their fortunes on the pitch, too.