Sunderland Was Europe's First Nike Team - Here Are The First-Ever Nike Football Kits

Football shirt geeks Classic Football Shits have go their hands on what is one of the most historic Nike football kits - their first-ever jersey of an European team: Sunderland AFC.

Nike was founded 55 years ago, in 1965. The company started producing football products in 1971, when they released their first-ever football boot, 'The Nike'. The reason for Nike to sponsor Sunderland is pretty simple - Nike's UK operation (Nike (UK) Ltd) has been based in Sunderland since 1982 when it first started up in the UK, acting as an agent for the sale of the global brand’s footwear, clothing and accessories on behalf of the Nike group of companies.

First-Ever Nike Kit In Europe - Sunderland 1983-86 Home Jersey

The first-ever Nike kit for an European team was released in 1983 and used until 1986. It features a classic Sunderland design with red and white vertical stripes. The most curious thing is that the old Nike logo was on the left side and the club shield on the right.

Nike dressed Sunderland for three years.In 1986, the Belgian firm Patrick replaced Nike in the Sunderland jerseys. Three years later, Nike would sign Paris Saint-Germain, their longest European club partnership in the history of the company in terms of football.

The first team worldwide to wear a Nike uniform was the Portland Timbers of the NASL, the former US soccer league. Portland is the hometown of Nike.

1978 Portland Timbers jersey

Do you like the Sunderland 1983-1986 kit by Nike? Let us know in the comments below.