A day before New York Fashion Week’s kickoff, Adidas held a star-studded runway show to debut its new jerseys for Major League Soccer, which is entering its 25th season.
Last night in New York City, the Three Stripes outfitted athletes and celebrities in the new jerseys including Houston Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, gamer Ninja, actor Colin Hanks and several others. Adidas also brought out retired soccer star Alexi Lalas, who played in the league during its inaugural season.
After the event, Lalas — still wearing the fresh New England Revolution look — reminisced with FN on the jerseys he wore in 1996.
“Back in my playing days we wore things that would weigh us down. We didn’t know it at the time but they were incredibly heavy. It was also back in the ’90s so everything was very big and extra-large,” Lalas told FN.
The 26 team jerseys feature the brand’s three-stripe Adidas EQT designs, something it debuted in the ‘90s when the MLS was formed, and each team’s look will feature unique elements reflecting their history. Lalas thinks these are nice touches.
“Because [the inception of MLS] is recent, it’s in the age of documentation, you can see what we wore, you can see the videos and pictures,” Lalas said. “It’s smart of Adidas to recognize that there is wealth to depict from, to use a nod to the past as it looks into the future.”
Lalas also offered more praise of the Three Stripes and what the brand means to the sport in the U.S.
“When you say Adidas you immediately think about soccer. It’s the first thing that you think about because of their long history and they long support,” Lalas said. “I’ve been around for a long time, I used to play in the previous century and I can tell you from an American perspective it’s hard to find someone who has done more for the progress and the health when it comes to spreading the gospel of the game out there.”
Aside from the history-inspired additions, the jerseys will feature a new name and number font that Adidas described as “dynamic, energetic and bold.” It was created in collaboration with the MLS and designer and typographer Rick Banks.
During the reveal last night, Lalas also spoke with FN about the press the United States women’s national soccer team receives compared to the men and the impact the squad has had on the sport stateside.
“They’re the best in the world and in the United States we love the best and we demand the best when it comes to everything, including our sports. From a men’s perspective, we’re not the best in the world. Until we are there is going to be some challenges and obstacles and some perspective that differs when it comes to the women’s team,” Lalas said. “They deserve all the attention that they get.”
He continued, “They are rock stars individually, as a team they represent the best part of who we are as Americans and ultimately they go out there and you can expect each and every time that you’re going to be entertained and they are going to win. If they’re talking about it they back it up. When they get on the field they deliver and Americans appreciate that.”
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