As we await the unveiling of our hotly-anticipated (and possibly hot pink) away shirt, Drew Heatley runs down his top 10 change kits of the Premier League era.
Inspired by Will Gardner’s excellent Top of the Pops-style rundown of our best home kits, I wanted to do the same for our away – and third – offerings. It’s a mixed bag to say the least, with plenty not getting anywhere near the chart – including, you’ll be pleased to know, the mint-green monstrosity from last term. Here we go:
10. 2013/14 – away
For many, this one holds some bad memories – it was, of course, our first relegation season. But we actually only played six times in this – with our third kit (navy and orange) becoming more closely associated with the debacle, probably because it was worn when relegation was confirmed against Stoke City.
This gets the nod for me, purely for the marketing campaign. Adidas tapped into the nostalgia of our 2000/01 First Division-winning white and red away strip, with Boa, Kit Symons and Rufus Brevett being rolled out to model the new top. Red and black is the FFC away secret sauce, but red and white is a close second.
9. 2005/06 – third
This little number was the perfect alternative for those who hated the asymmetrical red and black sleeve piping on the Puma home top (sound familiar?). It was slick, black, white piping – on both arms, and the sponsor was minimalistic. There was a red variant for our away shirt, but the shade was a tad too bright to be cool.
Unfortunately, back then we couldn’t win away games if you paid us. And we didn’t have much use for a third kit. We wore it twice – but it was only meant to be once. Both occasions were at the Stadium of Light. The first was abandoned after 21 minutes after a freak snow storm, despite the Whites being 1-0 up. The second was when already-relegated Sunderland won the rescheduled match 2-1 – their first home win of the season in their final home match. Fashionable, but far from lucky.
8. 2003/04 – away
Again, if you’re a fan who wants a white shirt with a black collar on your home top and wants no experimentation whatsoever, then our Puma-made one-black-sleeved top in 2003/04 wasn’t for you. Step forward our away shirt again to save the day. This is our only all-black with red trim offering in the Premier League, and when you paired it with red shorts, it’s a doozy.
Its crowning moment came just three games into the season, in what became known as Barry Hayles day. Our Jamaican striker defied his 31 years to put Spurs to the sword in their own back garden, scoring three without reply in this resplendent black-and-red number.
7. 2022/23 – third
This has to be in the chart, not only for it being an antidote to the aforementioned mint abomination, but for the memories of our Championship-winning season. The World Mobile sponsor was replaced by W88 for this season, but the black, camo-printed vibes remained.
You’ll not need reminding that we won a record seven away games last time out – and this shirt got plenty of action, with memorable victories against Leeds and Brighton.
6. 2008/09 – away
This was one for the old-timers. A throwback to our red-and-black halved shirts from the 1994/95 and 1995/96 seasons – complete with a collar. Where were you when we were shit? Etc. Those two campaigns, alongside this effort from Nike, are the only ones to date we’ve dabbled in away halves in at least the last 40 years – time for a return perhaps?
This was obviously a magnificent campaign, where we finished seventh – our highest-ever Premier League finish. Which, as Will established in his piece, definitely helps carry a top up the ranks. Wins against Bolton and Manchester City come to mind when thinking of this top – and , for some reason, Andrew Johnson – but don’t ask me why.
5. 2010/11 – third
Now, this is arguably the first truly iconic shirt on this list. The infamous “Harrods” kit. While this summer everyone predicted Newcastle to sport the sports-washed green of their Saudi owners, for years everyone expected Fulham to run out in the Harrods green and gold. But for 15 years, Chairman Mo refrained (or perhaps it just never crossed his mind). This strip was made to honour our chairman, but due to the lead time on design with manufacturers Kappa, Fayed had already sold Harrods by the time we wore it for the first time. Green shirt, shorts and socks were offset by gold trim, a gold FX Pro logo, and Kappa logos on the shoulders. Even gold Premier League name and numbers! Lovely.
I think I speak for everyone here when I say Chris Baird at Stoke is the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about this strip. His brace in the first 10 minutes at the Bet365 stadium gave us a fantastic festive win.
4. 2002/03 – away
If I can’t have a red and black kit, I’ll have a Black with white one, please. This shirt had a tough act to follow, with an iconic away top preceding it. But it just about did the job. Again, a minimalist white sponsor logo helps here, as do the iconic three stripes of Adidas going all the way down the arms – and the long-sleeved version is even nicer.
I associate this shirt mostly with our short UEFA Cup run, but we did get a 3–0 win at the Stadium of Light in the league, with Junichi Inamoto, Barry Hayles and Steve Marlet getting on the scoresheet.
3. 2012/13 – third
Ah, the podium places. We don’t do sashed shirts, but when we do, boy are they gorgeous. This black Kappa shirt had a white and gold sash running diagonally down the front, with FX Pro agreeing to shrink their logo and place it just under our crest, and the Kappa logo sat high up on the right shoulder.
This is known to many as the Berba shirt. He scored the winner at White Hart Lane in this strip, as wella s the second in our 3-0 final day win at Swansea, and for some reason it just typifies his short stay in SW6. Classy.
2. 2007/08 – away
Red and black stripes. A white v-neck collar. A white LG logo and Nike swoosh. This really ticked all the boxes, and is only pipped to the top spot by the OG. This is Fulham on the road as they are meant to be.
And it was worn during perhaps our most iconic moments – the biggest being our final-day win at Portsmouth to keep us in the Premier League. But, of course, it was there for our 2-0 victory against Reading, and our 3-2 win at the City of Manchester stadium. A perfect Fulham away kit for some perfect moments.
1. 2001/02 – away
Will our first-ever Premier League kits ever be beaten? Will ranked our home shirt from this season as top of the pile, and I find it hard to place the away shirt any lower. This Adidas shirt had black sleeves, with the red and black stripes on the front and back. The Pizza Hut logo is encased in a red square, so it doesn’t get lost. This was also regularly paired with red shorts, which really adds to the look.
We picked up wins against Derby County and Champions League-chasing Leeds United in this strip, as we finished a super respectable 13th.