Nike and FA respond to criticism over change to new England shirt | Football

Nike claim to have given the St George’s flag a ‘playful’ update (Nike)

Nike and the Football Association insist the new England kit will not be recalled after receiving criticism over the altered St George’s flag.

Earlier this week, Nike unveiled England’s new home and away kits which will be worn by Gareth Southgate’s side at Euro 2024 this summer.

However, Nike has angered a section of England supporters with a ‘playful update’ to the St George’s cross on the back of the collar, which has been changed from the traditional red cross to one featuring navy, light blue and purple stripes.

Former Premier League midfielder Joey Barton has accused Nike of making England’s new kit ‘woke’ and ‘rainbow-fied’.

‘Proper England fans should boycott it until they put our national flag back the way it should be and has been for centuries. Embarrassing. Can’t believe the FA signed it off,’ Barton wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

‘Don’t worry there will be gay or lesbian lion soon. Virtue signalling to the max. Who knows one day, one might turn into a lioness. Go woke, go broke.

‘Won’t be buying my sons the shirt that disrespects our country’s flag. Might as well put a Rainbow/Palestine/Ukraine flag on it for all those virtue signalling characters who lap this nonsense up. Fix it Nike.’

Simon Jordan, the former Crystal Palace owner and current talkSPORT presenter, also accused the FA of being ‘virtue-signalling’ and claims no other country would accept its flag being altered.

‘I don’t quite understand why Nike want to have a playful brief on our identity,’ Jordan said.

‘Is our national identity a joke, is it something we’re ashamed of? I think our national identity is something we should be proud of. I don’t find it offensive, I find it unnecessary.

Harry Kane models England's new home shirt for Euro 2024

Harry Kane models England’s new home shirt for Euro 2024 (Nike)

‘Rather than reclaim it, what we’ll do is put up a meaningless cross that has no value to it and represents nobody.

‘No other country would allow this to happen, they wouldn’t allow it to be done on their national shirt.

‘This is the same Nike that couldn’t even be bothered to produce Mary Earps shirts. I don’t think we should be taking lessons from Nike on the values of this country.

‘And the FA are absolutely complicit in this. The FA will have their virtue-signalling fingers all over this.’

Bukayo Saka models England’s new away shirt for Euro 2024 (Nike)

Despite the criticism, both the FA and Nike are not planning to change the St George’s cross on the new kits.

According to MailOnline, the FA ‘completely stand by it’, while the shirt is said to have ‘flown off the shelves’ since it was unveiled on Monday.

England will debut the new Nike kits in their upcoming friendlies against Brazil and Belgium at Wembley.

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