Times when Scotland kit changed Saltire design before England flag row

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer criticised Nike's latest design.

Times when Scotland kit changed Saltire design before England flag row Nike

A row has erupted over the “controversial” design of St George’s Cross on the new England shirt, but there is a history of altering the Saltire on Scotland’s kit.

Nike’s decision to change the appearance of St George’s Cross for England’s Euro 2024 jersey using purple and blue horizontal stripes in what it called a “playful update” was met with widespread criticism.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer were just a few of the high-profile names to urge for the design to be scrapped.

It comes after Scotland released its home and away kits for the summer tournament in Germany, with Adidas making changes to the Saltire for Euro 2024.

Scotland’s home kit features a “tartan twist” on the front but has a Saltire on the back of the neck – in the same position as the England flag – in black and white with the St Andrew’s Cross etched with a geometric pattern.

On the away jersey that Steve Clarke’s side will wear, the Cross is white but the traditionally blue field is shaded in purple zig-zagging lines.

The design of the Saltire on Scotland's Euro kits has been changed for Euro 2024.Adidas

It’s not the first time the national flag has been incorporated on to a football jersey with a different design.

Stephen Flynn MSP, sharing the Diadora-designed kit worn in 2007 which had an enlarged saltire emblazoned across the front of the shirt, joked on X: “Remember when Diadora disrespected the Saltire and none of us celebrated beating France because of it.

The design featured on both the home and away strips worn by the likes of James McFadden during Scotland’s Euro 2008 qualifying campaign which saw the Scots beat France home and away.

The third kit of that era featured the Saltire cross in gold.

Scotland’s 2022-23 home kit by Adidas featured a thistle at the base of the neck rather than the flag.

A thistle was etched on to the neck collar of Scotland's 2022-23 top rather than a flag.Adidas

The FA said it was “very proud” of the red and white St George’s Cross but gave its support to the new design.

A spokesperson said: “The new England 2024 home kit has a number of design elements which were meant as a tribute to the 1966 World Cup-winning team.

“The coloured trim on the cuffs is inspired by the training gear worn by England’s 1966 heroes, and the same colours also feature on the design on the back of the collar.

“It is not the first time that different coloured St George’s Cross-inspired designs have been used on England shirts.

“We are very proud of the red and white St George’s cross – the England flag.

“We understand what it means to our fans, and how it unites and inspires, and it will be displayed prominently at Wembley tomorrow – as it always is – when England play Brazil.”

The flag was presented with different colours in a kit designed by Umbro in 2011 which showed St George’s Cross in different colours such as green and pink.

The design aimed to “represent the country’s diverse cultural make up” with a twist on the flag.

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