Why Target Is Putting Even More Kick Into the Soccer Category

Target has inked a new deal with Umbro that will bring an exclusive assortment of kids’ soccer footwear, apparel and gear to its website and stores across the country next month.

Ranging in price from $4.99 to $19.99, the lineup will feature more than 90 items for both boys and girls, including slide sandals, performance cleats, socks, tank tops, jerseys, shorts, leggings, track pants and track jackets, as well as equipment such as balls, shin guards, water bottles and cinch sacks. Product will be available to shop beginning on Feb. 25.

A pair of cleats from the new collection.
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

“We’re always looking to connect with our guests in new and unique ways, and for families and kids, the introduction of Umbro will mean even more reasons to choose Target,” said Mark Tritton, the chain’s EVP and chief merchandising officer. “Soccer is one of the fastest-growing sports in the U.S., and it continues to grow in popularity among our guests. As the only mass retailer to sell Umbro, we’re giving more families access to the sport through stylish and affordable apparel and gear.”

The deal follows a companywide investment in the sport last year. The Minneapolis-based retailer signed on as the official partner of Major League Soccer and as the official sponsor of hometown team Minnesota United FC. It also became the official retailer of the U.S. Youth Soccer Association.

Citing growing American interest and participation in the sport, Target also revealed that sales of soccer-related items spiked by 10 percent in 2016 — faster than any other sporting goods category. The chain sold 1 million soccer balls that year. Children, in particular, are embracing the game. More than 9 million kids played in youth soccer leagues in 2016, making it one of the top youth participation sports in the country.

Target saw sales of soccer-related items increase by 10 percent in 2016.
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand

“There are so many things that drew us to soccer — it’s multicultural, watched and played by families and is growing immensely in popularity,” SVP of marketing Rick Gomez said at the time. “We’ve partnered with several incredible organizations and vendors to invite soccer fans everywhere to engage with the Target brand in new ways.”

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