The Manchester City Football Club was formed in 1880. They were first dubbed St. Mark’s, which later changed to Gorton FC and then Ardwick AFC before settling on the name Manchester City in 1894. Since those long gone days, the club’s kits have changed significantly from the original black and white colorway to their current modern blues.
Let’s take a look back to see how the kits have changed over the years.
Manchester City History
Manchester City may have experienced financial troubles that led to their restructuring, but their new digs were, fortunately, more spacious and ultimately more popular. They were promoted to the First Division in 1899 and won their first trophy in 1904 at the FA Cup. They relocated yet again in 1923 and won their second FA Cup in 1934, but became plagued with three decades of slower times and only a third FA Cup to show for it.
In the 1960s, the club picked up the pace and won a slew of trophies, including a First Division title, both English Cups, and a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup. After that, successes for Manchester plummeted, but they managed to replicate their former glory in the late 1990s, working their way up to the Premier League and relocating, yet again, to the newly built City of Manchester Stadium (also known as Etihad Stadium) in 2003.
In 2008, ownership of the Manchester City Football Club transferred over to the hands of the Abu Dhabi United Group. The club is now considered one of the wealthiest franchises to date. With the ownership change, the club’s funders have dug deeper into their wallets, allowing for the signing of star players, which has catapulted the squad into winning more titles: two Premier League titles, one FA Cup, and one League Cup.
Transformation of the Manchester City Kit
Manchester City sustained their signature blue and white kit for the majority of their century-long history. After the first kit had been retired (black and white featuring a St. George cross) in 1894, Manchester City settled on blue tops with white bottoms, paired with dark blue socks.
1904: In 1904, the club has a similar look, only adding two white stripes along the tops of the socks.
1965: In 1965, the team replaces the standard collar with a crew neck, and reverts the color of their socks back to a solid, light blue.
1969–1970: In 1970, maroon makes its mark striping the sides of the shorts and the tops of the socks.
1974: During the span of 1972 to 1974, bright red replaces maroon, and white stripes top the darker blue socks. For the first time, a crest adorns the jersey.
1984–1985: The mid-1980s go all blue and nuts with the stripes! Dark blue vertical stripes adorn the jersey, and are paired with blue shorts.
1997–1998: In 1997, a bold change takes place, with both the main jersey and socks now a darker color. A recurring dark Kappa design extends across the arms and sides of the shorts.
2008–2009: In 2008, the light blue returns in a brighter hue. The kit also features a white stripe across and down the side of the left part of the chest, with a thinner, dark blue stripe running down the opposite direction.
2011–2012: In 2011, the kits return to their iconic blue color, and the socks feature thick horizontal white stripes.
2016–2017: In 2016, the jersey remains blue, but has darker sleeves, which transition into stripes along the shoulder segments. The socks maintain their all-white color underneath a Nike swoosh and “City” logo.
If you’re headed out to watch Manchester City take the field at the Etihad Stadium, make sure you’re stocked up on the essential soccer gear from Fanatics.com. If you’re just rooting for them from afar, you can still represent the City from home with your fan-worthy duds.