Out of Yellow Ink? English Soccer Team's Shirt Sponsor Logo Is Way Off
The idea of a sports team wearing a sponsor's logo is still in its infancy in most American sports. But, for soccer, a sponsor logo is just part of the overall jersey design.
The main shirt sponsor is prime real estate for a company or organization, so you'd think they would ensure that it looks the way it's supposed to look. But, Derby County FC, a team in England's League One (their third tier of professional soccer), seems to have had a printer error, and now the logo is showing up in different colors across the players' jerseys.
Derby announced its partnership with the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) as its shirt sponsor in November. When the club posted photos of the logo adorning the black-and-white kits, people noticed something was wrong. The logo was light green one one, a deeper green on another (the correct hue), and blue on the third.
It wasn't just that one-off announcement, either. Fans noticed the shirt sponsor looked weird during games, too.
"Didn't know we have multi-colored sponsors," one fan wrote, according to Footy Headlines.
"Why is [Jason] Knight's sponsor blue?" another asked.
There's no actual information from Derby or their apparel supplier, Umbro, as to why this happened, but the running theory is that it was a printer error. They simply ran out of yellow color, so eventually green became blue. Everyone in apparel decoration knows that this is a totally avoidable problem.
To use another sports phrase, this was an unforced error on the decorator's part.
This wasn't the only issue Derby had with these logos either. When the sponsorship was announced, Derby stated that only the players would have the sponsor on the shirt, and that fan replicas would remain blank. This was "owing to the logistics involved in sublimating logos both post-production and post-sale."
This is a bad look for both Derby and NSPCC, who paid for that sponsorship and could use all of the visibility it could get. And, for the apparel decorators, these are variables you can control.
It goes to show that even the professionals make mistakes, but is a good cautionary tale nonetheless.