Friday, 29 April 2011

The WANTED list

When I started this project in March 2010 I never thought that I would have got so many shirts so quickly. Just 2 years later I am over 93% of the way though my project with 195 countries ticked off my list, and just 14 to go.

That's over 250 football shirts, including my vast collection of Peterborough United shirts.

I've already completed the 53 UEFA members, the 11 member of OFC and the 10 members of CONMEBOL (Europe, Oceania and South America). Here's a quick run through of who's still on the wanted list:

CONCACAF (North America)
  • Aruba
  • Curacao
  • Dominican Republic
CAF (Africa)
  • Central African Republic
  • Comoros
  • Djibouti
  • Eritrea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Libya
  • Mauritania
  • Somalia
  • South Sudan
AFC (Asia)
  • Syria
  • Turkmenistan
Are you able to help? Do you know anyone who coud help me? If you do then please get in contact.

    My Football Shirt Project in the media

    Wow, what a bizarre week it's been. I was woken up on Wednesday morning by a phone call from my girlfriend's Mum telling us that Chris Evans had just mentioned my project during his show on BBC Radio 2. Apparently they were discussing the more bizarre stories that had appeared in the national newspapers.

    So I popped down to the local newsagent to buy a copy of The Sun, and there it is on page 28, next to an article about Theo Walcott writing children's books:

    There's a mistake or two in the article, but at least they spelt my name correctly!

    Now the reason that I knew the article had appeared in The Sun was because I had received a phone call (whilst still in bed) from talksport radio, another national radio station, this time asking me if I would do a 10 minute interview on the Hawksbee & Jacobs show, who apparently look at the "whacky and bizarre" stories in sport. They'd somehow thought that I'd had the largest collection of football shirts in the world, which certainly isn't true, but the interview went pretty well nonetheless. I got a chance to plu this blog, and my facebook page, although they cut me off before I'd got the chance to promote the new twitter feed.

    Understandably traffic to the blog increased immensly. I had two thousand views on the day, and followers on the facebook group doubled.

    It didn't stop there though, the next day I got a phone call from Andy Burrows at BBC Radio Cambridgeshire inviting me do anotehr interview on his drive-time show.

    Tuesday, 12 April 2011


    Chinese-Taipei - Away - ?


    Australia U23 vs Chinese-Taipei U23 in Beijing Olympics Qualifiers

    Chinese-Taipei - Home - 2007


    Australia vs Chinese-Taipei in the 2010 Peace Queen Cup Semi-Final

    Chinese-Taipei - Away -2010


    Chinese-Taipei vs Guam in the EAFC Semi-Finals

    The History of Chinese-Taipei is very complex. As far as I can figure out they started out as the football association for mainland China who then moved to Taiwan, then China created their own association. So the Chinese FA changed their name to Taiwan and left the AFC to join the OFC. The OFC then kicked them out for 'naming issues'. They eventually rejoined the AFC as Chinese-Taipei in 1989.

    They are currently ranked 161st in FIFA, and 31st in the AFC region below the much smaller nations of Hong Kong and Singapore. The womens team have done alot better, and are ranked 36th, 3 places higher than Portugal.

    Chinese-Taipei - Home - 2010

    It was surprisingly hard to get hold of the Chinese-Taipei shirt. I originally found it on the Taiwanese version of eBay (linked from the eBay website) but since I can't read Chinese I have some difficulty working out how to buy the shirts. Fortunately my friend Fabius from Singapore was able to help me out, I was deighted, untill he figured out that you could only bid on items if you are a Taiwan national...I'm not....nor is Fabius.

    A bit more searching (which is harder than it sounds when you don't read/write Chinese) took me to the sports shop that was selling the shirts on the auction site. Fabius was able to get an e-mail contact from them. It was plain sailing from then onward since they spoke perfect English. I couldn't make my mind up which shirts I wanted, so I just bought them all.

    I did find out when they arrived that a 'Medium' in Taiwan, is a 'Small' in the UK.

    Thanks for your help Fabius, and thanks Chiggia Sports.

    A new Andorra shirt

    Republic of Ireland vs Andorra in 2001

    Andorra - Home -2001


    Afghanistan Women in a friendly 2009

    If I was to collect the shirts in alphabetical order then this would have been my first shirt, but I didn't, so it's my 160th. 

    A couple of years ago Afghanistan were rock bottom of the FIFA world rankings, but a recent 5-0 aggregate win over Bhutan and an AFC Cup win against Sri Lanka has pulled them up the the dizzy heights of 174th.

    Afghanistan - Away - 2009

    Hummel are possibly my favourite kit manufacturer. Not only do they make fantastic shirts (see Sierra Leone, Zanzibar, Tibet and Uganda), but they also go beyond sponsorship and help develop the game in the countries they sponsor.

    A collector from Australia recently got in contact with me and gave me contact details for someone who works at Hummel. The guy a Hummel was brilliant, he gave me a whole load of information about the Afghanistan national team and how they were working with them. When the shirt arrived I also had a Hummel pen drive with promotional videos of the Afghanistan men and womens teams. The new shirt should be out in the summer and you can bet that I'll be first in line to get it.

    In the mean time, if they've still got any left, check out the Hummel online store.

    Thursday, 7 April 2011

    Spotlight on Africa

    There are 53 FIFA members (and 2 non-FIFA members) in CAF. These are split into 5 seperate unions/associations/federations.

    Council of East and Central Africa Football Associations (5/10)

    West Africa Football Union (13/16)

    Union des Fédérations de Football d'Afrique Centrale (1/8)
    • Cameroon
    • Central African Republic
    • Chad
    • Congo, Republic of
    • Congo, Democratic Republic of
    • Equatorial Guinea
    • Gabon
    • Sao Tome and Principe

    Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (7/14)

    Union of North African Football Federations (4/5)

    Wednesday, 6 April 2011


     Norway vs Macedonia in a 2010 World Cup Qualifier in Oslo.

    Macedonia - Away - 2009