Reports in Spain have suggested that Celtic may have severed ties with Nike because the sportswear giant wanted to alter the traditional, and iconic, hoops.
In a piece focused on the news that Barcelona’s 2019/20 home kit will be a Croatia-inspired checkered design, AS posits the idea that the Parkhead side may have been aghast at Nike’s attempts to shake up the classic design.
Reaction to the news has been understandably mixed; with many Blaugrana fans dismayed at Barca’s break with tradition.
It’s not the first time the Catalans have taken a step away from the traditional - the club’s 2012/13 home shirt was a PSG-esque all blue shirt with a red middle panel, and the 2015/16 strip featured a hooped pattern.
Barcelona’s kits are made by Nike, and have been since the 1998/99 season. Closer to home Celtic carried Nike as a kit sponsor between 2005 and 2015 before switching to New Balance.
The closest Nike got to tinkering with the iconic strip was the 2012/13 kit, which featured narrower hoops, and black socks for the first time since 1932.
Nike also make kits for Argentinian side Boca Juniors but have maintained the club’s iconic home kits of blue shirts with a yellow band across the chest.
• READ MORE - Revealed: Celtic’s new home strip for 2018-19 season
Now Spanish publication AS is suggesting that Celtic may have severed ties with Nike in a row over altering their traditional kit, claiming that part of the shift to New Balance was due to Nike expressing an interest in radically altering the hoops.
Celtic fans’ reaction to the American firm daring to tinker with the design of the home shirt by breaking up the hoops on the sleeves suggests that the line in AS may not be too far from the truth.