Two classics - but where do they rank?

Ranking the 9 greatest kits in the history of the European Championship

The Euros fever is pulsing through our veins at an alarming rate and it’s got us thinking about the best kits to ever take to the pitch in one of football’s greatest tournaments.

One of the best parts of a tournament and a huge factor in contributing to the buzz of it all is being inundated with a bunch of colourful new kits.

It’s not enough to sit and watch from the pub or your friend’s back garden in normal clothes, thus rocking a classic shirt feels mandatory. You just enjoy it more in a kit. They’re the rules.

We’ve already ranked all the home shirts released for Euro 2024, so to have a bit of fun and serve as inspiration for your summer wardrobe, we’ve trawled the archives and ranked our nine greatest kits in the history of the tournament.

You’re going to want to hide your bank card while reading this one.

9. Italy home – Euro 2000

Is it the best of the best? Probably not, but Kappa’s unique offering for Italy at Euro 2000 deserves its place in the Planet Football Euro kits Hall of Fame. Yeah, that’s a thing now.

Way ahead of its time from a technical standpoint, the iconic Kombat fit stood out in a sea of baggy shirts while the goalposts were shifting with the new millennium. The Azzurri balled out in the unique, slim-fit offering and reached the semi-final with a squad including Totti, Del Piero and Inzaghi.

It’s a little bit weird, but the coolest kits are. Rock that at a festival or a quirky bar in a town centre nowadays and you’re getting serious nods of approval.

8. Netherlands home – Euro 1988

Go on, get your best Gary Neville ‘ooooo’ impression out now.

As time has gone on, the infamous Netherlands home shirt produced by adidas has become more and more polarising, with the shirt being so famed that it’s actually become a bit boring over time. That’s probably because the German manufacturers have since rinsed the iconic design, but can you blame them?

If you can look beyond all the tiresome remakes and appreciate the kit for what it was at the time, it remains a beauty and a serious piece of history.Netherlands Euro 88.

7. France home – Euro 2020

A bold claim, but one we stand by. Much like Euro 2020 as a whole, we believe France’s home kit from that tournament in 2021 will continue to age like a fine wine.

Restrictions lifted, fans back in stadiums, football coming out of every orifice and Karim Benzema balling out in his return to the national team in a bloody gorgeous navy blue kit, complete with an intricate stripe design.

It doesn’t overcomplicate things but blends modern with that classic feel. Could be worn to Powerleague or to the pub – the true sign of a banger shirt.France Euro 2020.

6. Portugal home – Euro 2004

A weird time for kits as we shifted from heavy materials, outrageous patterns and turned-up collars to an era of technology first, Nike’s ‘Total 90’ branding in the mid-2000s was a cultural phenomenon and the kit templates were key to that.

We could’ve picked from a few, but that template worked best with Portugal’s colours. The green collar and the yellow piping gave a modern pop to that classic, deep red base and the green shorts to compliment just tied it all together.

Would that rather obnoxiously large central numbering in Total 90 font work these days? Probably not, but it was perfect for the time. Immediate flashbacks to young Cristiano Ronaldo.Portugal Euro 2004.

READ NEXT: An astonishing XI of players at Euro 2024 born after Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal debut

TRY A QUIZ: Can you name every player to win the Champions League and Euros in the same year?

5. Italy home – Euro 1996

A much more resounding yes across the board from football hipsters worldwide trying desperately to shoehorn retro shirts into their outfits, Italy’s Euro ’96 offering was much more textbook for the time and it worked a charm.

Manufactured by Nike – the Azzurri haven’t half been around the houses – they flattered to deceive in a kit that deserved better, finishing third in their group behind Germany and the Czech Republic and bowing out early doors.

That doesn’t take away from an absolutely stunning shirt, though, which combined a textbook 90s collar with hits of white and gold on the sleeve and coming down from the neck. The best bit, though? The badge. Always the badge. Iconic. 

4. Portugal away – Euro 2012

Purists would probably shout at us for putting a kit from a tournament as recent as Euro 2012 on the podium and as much as we were tempted, Portugal’s awa shirt from that year just misses out.

An absolute stunner on the design front, it’s just exceptionally clean and feels truly timeless. Long or short sleeve, that blank canvas allows a brilliant, intricate red and green design to pop across the chest.

They were knocked out by eventual winners Spain on penalties in the semi-final, but that shouldn’t hold back a near-flawless shirt. This one will only continue to age well.Portugal at Euro 2012.

3. England home – Euro 1996

If you were asked to design an England shirt from memory alone, chances are you’d come up with something extremely close to this.

The Three Lions have had some beauties through the years, but none of them have ultimately matched up to this heavyweight hitter and we don’t think a shirt ever will. Even the shirt they reached the final of Euro 2020 in was simply no match for this masterpiece from Umbro.

It was worn by greats, at a great tournament, and it’s the perfect garm for all occasions. Hell, wear this to a wedding and you’ll get a resounding response.

Don’t take our word for that, though.England at Euro 1996.

2. Denmark home – Euro 1992

It’s loud, it’s bold, it’s whacky, it’s so painfully 90s that it’s slapping you across the face so hard that you’ve woken up with a curtains haircut on the floor of a Blockbuster. Denmark’s kit for Euro ’92 perfectly suited the feel at the time and was the icing on the cake of their underdog triumph.

Honourable mention to Peter Schmeichel’s rainbow goalkeeper shirt, we’ve given the silver medal to the outfield home kit, which was a moment of brilliance b the ever-underrated Hummel. Combining a collar with absurdly loud sleeves that are so hideous that they’re beautiful, the shirt sits just on the line between wearable and too whacky.

1. West Germany home – Euro 1988

Come on. What else?

Again, adidas have done their best to rinse this template like they did with the Netherlands’ shirt, but it’s so undeniably brilliant that it simply cannot be ruined. Ever.

It’s perfection in fabric. An undisputed masterpiece that unites hipsters, kit geeks, and even yer da – who refuses to acknowledge anything German but can still make an exception for this.

The kit was so good that they wore it again two years later at the 1990 World Cup, pictured below. If only kits lasted that long nowadays…

West Germany Euro 1988.