Samstag, 28. März 2015

Egypt 2

Hossam Hassan (Al-Ahli)
Egypt vs. Algeria (1-0), WC 1990 qualifier
1989 in Egypt

This is the other rare and old vintage shirt I got from the German collector whos dad worked in Egypt 20 years ago. This absolutely brilliant shirt is not matchworn obviously as it lacks a number. Still it is probably "match issued" as they were no "fan shirts" in those times.
This shirt was used in the 1990 World Cup qualifier campaign, especially in the amazing match vs. Algeria where Hossam Hassan, one of the biggest stars in international football, scored his first ever international goal! The match ended in a 1:0 for Egypt and brought them to the World Cup in 1994. The "fights" between the Algerian and the Egypt team also started in this historic match.
Even better the shirt is signed by all the players from the 1989 squad. I could decipher a very few of the signatures, including the one of Hossam Hassan, but as I am not fluid in Arabic I struggle to find out who all the players are.
However, I absolutely love this historic piece of polyester and want to thank Rene, the seller, a lot again!

Bahrain 2

To be honest, it is hard for me to find words about this shirt. It is a probably matchworn vintage Bahrain shirt that I got from a German collector combined with the Egypt shirt from 1989 for 150€.
The German collector found those shirts in the stuff of his dad, who worked for the development of football in the Arabic world, mainly in Egypt. He again got this shirt from a befriended player about 20 years ago.
I do not know yet from which season this brilliant shirt is, but the Bahrain FA already confirmed that it is original and promised to help me finding a match picture of it and giving me more info about the season it was used in.
With quite a huge spending I "lost the track" a little bit, but those 2 shirts are definitely totally worth it in my eyes as they are very unique collectibles.

Belarus 2

Pavel Plaskonny (Dinamo Minsk)
Belarus vs. Spain (0:4), World Cup 2014 qualifiers
2012 in Belarus
I got this matchworn Belarus shirt from a contact in Minsk for a pretty affordable price. He again got the shirt directly from a contact within the Belarus FA.
The shirt itself is quite plain, but the fact it is matchworn, maybe even from the match vs. Spain, of course makes it very special and interesting. So I really love that shirt!
Even more interesting the shirts of the "star players" like Putsila or Hleb were long gone so the only matchworns they can still offer are those of "less known" players like Pavel Plaskonny. In fact I even much prefer those and of course it makes me learning a bit about the less-known Belarussian players.
So I really thank Hadjimurat, my friend in Minsk, for his amazing help!

Freitag, 13. März 2015

Switzerland 2

Stéphane Chapuisat (Borussia Dortmund | Germany)
Switzerland vs. Netherlands (0:2) | Euro 1996 in England
This is the second shirt I got as a swap from a German collector for the Uzbek club shirt I sent him. I absolutely love the design and besides that it is always good to remember 1996, which was until recently the only tournament I saw Germany lifting a trophy.
Unfortunately Switzerland was not that successful in that tournament with only winning a single point vs. Scotland.

I quite like the match picture above from the match vs. Netherlands. I really cannot believe that it would still be feasible to play on one ground against each other in those inverse colored shirts. Absolutely amazing idea.

Serbia 2

Aleksandar Kolarov (Lazio Rome | Italy)
Serbia vs. Germany (1:0) | WC 2010 in South Africa
I just bought that great shirt as a good chance popped up here. I was offered this matchworn U21 shirt by a Serbian collector and only had to pay about 30€ buying it in a bigger bundle.
The design is quite nice and loads better than the plain white one of my old Serbia shirt.
Nevertheless the shirt still reminds me of a very horrible moment in German footballing history - the loss vs. Serbia in the World Cup 2010. This match put loads of pressure on our team that we luckily could withstand leaving the group with Ghana and kicking Serbia out ultimately.
Thanks again "Dresovi" for that great shirt!

Scotland 2

Darren Fletcher (Manchester United | England)
Scotland vs Sweden (0:3) | Euro 2012 qualifier | 2010 in Sweden
As one of my best shirt-mates, Joe, is a Scot I can never enough shirts of "his" team. Besides that Scotland of course always has cracking designs.
This one is the 2010 away version and I got it as a swap from a German collector (together with an old Swiss shirt) for an Uzbek club shirt. So in the end I invested about 30€ for it.
I absolutely love the design as yellow always has been one of my favorite colours and of course the imprinted logo makes it look even great.
I cannot find a good hook to a fun fact about Scotland I learned today, so I will just splash it out. The official national animal of Scotland is... take a seat... the UNICORN. Great! I love the crazy Scots

Saaremaa 2

Martti Pukk (FC Kuressaare)
Saaremaa | Island Games 2007 in Rhodes
All my thanks go again to the Saaremaa legend Martti Pukk for this brilliant shirt! It is the second Saaremaa shirt I have and of course also the second one which is matchworn.
Again they just used the last seasons shirt of the local Estonian pro club FC Kuressaare to play in the Island Games. In this year, 2007, they not even bothered to change the print, but just stitched a yellow bar over the original name print as you can see clearly on the pic.
The shirt again came for a very fair 35€ including shipping to me. Thanks Martti!

Republic of Ireland

Liam Miller (Sunderland AFC | England)
Ireland vs Wales (2:2) | Euro 2008 qualifiers | 2007 in Ireland

FINALLY I could add Ireland to my collection. I am waiting for a proper Ireland shirt for ages now.
Until today I always had a huge problem to buy an Ireland shirt as in my eyes one of the big benefits of international football is that it is about passion, love and pride for your country and not the big money. This is usually reflected in the fact that shirts are generally unsponsored and sponsoring is even forbidden on national team shirts in matches.
However, the Republic of Ireland decided to not follow the worldwide strategy to be "non-commercial", but is instead trying to advert their main sponsor on all of their sold shirts for ages now. Even shirts from the 90s are sponsored!
Of course this does not make the shirt any cheaper for the fans. It just makes the FA a bit richer probably, because thousands of people are carrying around a logo of the sponsor for free.
All that led to the fact that I had to get a matchworn or at least issued shirt to cover Ireland and not to support their sponsoring strategy.
So this one is matchworn by the Irish U21 and was bought on eBay for around 50€ including shipment straight from Ireland.

Now back to the team: I absolutely love the Irish team and especially their fans and highly favorited them during their time with Trappatoni. You have to love a limited team that meets an anti-football loving coach. The combination often leads to glory and also did so for Ireland qualifiying for the Euros 2012 after felt ages without any major tournament. Unfortunately they did not well too good in a tough group and went out winless.
However, the spirit and the amazing fans have been absolutely fantastic!

Donnerstag, 5. März 2015


Mohammed Al-Siyabi (Al-Shabab)
Oman vs. UAE (0:0) | Gulf Cup 2014 in Saudi Arabia
During November 2014 I finally got into contact with the Omani FA, to more precise I got in touch with their media officer. He was very helpful and absolutely keen to get me some shirts for myself and other collectors around. So I ordered 8 of those brand new 2014 Kappa shirts and another 3 of the 2013 Taj shirts with their absolutely cracking design!
Unfortunately something went wrong and the Taj shirts got lost somewhere on the way and never made it to me. But at least I got this great Kappa shirt already. Besides that the good news are that the Omani FA media officer told me that they will re-send the Taj shirts to me so that all collectors will be served.
Thank you a lot dear Omani FA media officer! I really appreciate your help!

Northern Cyprus

Finally! Finally I got a Northern Cyprus shirt! Even though it is pretty plain I absolutely love that shirt, basically because I am hunting this one for 3 years now and finally Orcun, their FA general secretary, handed it over to me when I met him for the first time in person in Skopje. Thanks loads Orcun!
Northern Cyprus is better known to many as Turkish Cyprus and is de-facto independent for more than 20 years now. They also do have an own FA and a running league for nearly the same time and still were never accepted by FIFA, mainly because they are politically only recognized by Turkey.
I really hope that one day Northern Cyprus will be allowed, just as Palestine was, to join FIFA regardless of their political recognition.

Moldova 2

I do already have a Moldova shirt. Not any Moldova shirt, but the world famous 1€-Moldova shirt.That one was just amazing and many people got jealous how amazingly cheap shirts were at that time on German ebay.
However anyone out there has to admit that my first Moldova shirt was and is... well... ugly as hell.
Now Moldova finally got a great design and when Mustafa from Istanbul offered that shirt to me I couldn't say no to it. I am very pleased for Moldova that they finally got a proper design!
Actually Moldova in total is a very interesting country and - being one of the last countries in Europe nobody seems to know much about - it is on very top of my list for countries to visit soon!
I do not know yet when I will be able to jump over to Chisinau and then hopefully also Transnistria, but I will definitely do so!
Besides that I also plan to see the Moldova team in action soon when they will play their friendly in early July in Luxembourg! Of course I will dress up properly for that reason ;)

Macedonia 4

Stevica Ristic (Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors / South Korea)
Macedonia vs. Andorra (3:0) | Euro 2008 qualifier | 2007 in Macedonia
This, my fourth Macedonia shirt, is probably my favorite! In May 2015 I was a second time in Skopje, Macedonia, for a weekend with ConIFA. Of course I also invited Darko to join us and thus had the chance to meet Darko, who really got a friend to me, again, which was fantastic!
As Darko has a good friend who plays for the national team he was, again, able to organize me another matchworn Macedonia shirt from the 2007/08 area. I quite love the very unusual design of the shirt and of course a 100% matchworn shirt handed over as a gift from a friend is always something special.
Thanks again Darko for all your help!

Macedonia 2

Marjan Radeski (FK Metalurg Skopje)
Macedonia vs. Spain (1:5) | Euro 2016 qualifier | 2014 in Spain
This is overall my 3rd Macedonia shirt (the blog post "Macedonia" hides 2 shirts!) and it is the newest one from the current ongoing Euro 2016 qualifiers.
It is quite a nice design, even though I still prefer the 13/14 design I do have and of course the matchworn shirts as they do have a very special meaning to me as they were given to me by my good friend Darko.
This shirt was bought for as little as 30€ from Mustafa from Istanbul, who got them directly from the producing factory in Istanbul.
Thanks Mustafa again for this cracking shirt!