32 countries’ freshly designed uniforms will hit the fields this week in Brazil, but not every team’s kit is championship-worthy. That’s why we’re breaking down each tournament-bound jersey, from the inspired odes to national heritages to the ones that missed the mark.
32: Iran Why yes, that is an endangered Asiatic cheetah on Iran’s jersey.
31. Algeria Someone at Puma must really like pistachio ice cream (or key lime pie). The Algerians have a reasonably easy draw, but you can add these kits to the Group of Death.
30. Honduras The giant H feels like a call for help from a graphic designer who’s run out of ideas. The replica jerseys actually feature a QR code right there on the front. No bueno.
29. Nigeria Are these guys playing soccer or selling Girl Scout cookies?
28. Japan The home kit is whatever, but the away kit is neon green—which we do not understand unless it is somehow meant to conjure images of the radioactive materials that birthed Godzilla.
27. Spain The single champion’s star—while tasteful—isn’t enough to redeem the weirdly deep shade of red, or the Venetian-blinds pattern. Most distressing, though, is the replacement of Spain’s traditional yellow numbers with self-congratulatory gold. Yeah, 2010 was wonderful, but hubris is a bitch.
26. Australia Points for the collar detail on the home jerseys, but dressing like Brazil isn’t going to make you play like Brazil.
25. Russia We could not make this up if we tried: That blue chest stripe high across Russia’s away jersey is supposed to be the sightline astronauts see when looking at Earth’s horizon from space.
24. Cote d’Ivoire In what will likely be electric striker Didier Drogba’s last ride with his national team, he’ll have to wear these unnecessarily bright stoplight-colored kits—all they’re missing is a red card.
23. Chile It’s a fine line between “timeless” and “boring.” The miniscule national crest is the only thing distinguishing the Chileans from your local rec league team.
22. Greece We appreciate a clean design, and dig the polo-shirt collar, but it’s cooler when countries use their national flag as inspiration for their jerseys, rather than just tacking one onto their chests.
21. South Korea Pope Benedict is loving that clerical collar.