Part of the joy of being a Wolves fan who doesn’t take Facebook comments personally are the debates that arise from seemingly simple questions, like who would win a fight between the Spice Girls, Led Zeppelin, S Club Jr and One Direction? (Answer: SG, but the video should be shown to an LZ soundtrack.)
- Season: 2005-6
- Finished: 7th
- Style: 10 /10
- Popularity: 9/10
- Quality: 9/10
- Collectability: 7/10
- Estimated price: short-sleeved replica £50 long-sleeved replica £60 player issue ca. £150-200
Or what is the worst Wolves home shirt ever? (I actually like the 92-93 tyre marks one, but I’m sorry, Nick and Co. The 96-98 one doesn’t do it for me, though I think that might be because I lack the chest hair to make the most of the Hasselhoff-collar, but the teal away shirt looks great in terms of the colours and pattern.) Or what is the best home shirt ever? (For me, it’s between the 90-92 Bukta top, the 93-94 one, the Nutmeg ones and the 2018-19 one. And did I mention the 92-93 one? This may be because I’m too young to have experienced our kits pre-early 80s.)
To my mind, though, there is no debate as to our best away shirt ever: this 2005-6 black top with the gold trim. I know this apparently makes me a “perpendicular”, according to some renowned shirt reviewers, but it doesn’t make me wrong.
Here, you can see a matchworn shirt Mark Kennedy wore that season (almost certainly against Leicester City). The matchworn is basically identical to the replica, but with the additional Chaucer sponsor on the back, plus the Coca Cola League badges on the arms, of course. The badges of the manufacturer and the club are embroidered on all the versions I have.
The shirt is quite baggy around the arms and upper chest compared to the tighter fitting Adidas tops of recent years, so is ideal for most of us fans to grow into on our sofas, and it is sturdy enough to give us time to do so. The gold trim is in a more porous, yet tougher material than the black areas and as well as being perfectly located to bring out the form of the shirt, it also adds a sense of aerodynamics that would give even the biggest fan of Manny’s samosas the sense of being able to glide across the ground with the ball at their feet whilst wearing it. I have used both the long-sleeved and short-sleeved replica shirts numerous times in kickabouts, but I think they still look and wear like new (as I believe the photos of my replica tops suggest here). In fact, the kits we had in the six years or so with Le Coq Sportif were all quite high in standard, with regard to design and feel, in my opinion, with a decent variety offered between the styles and materials.
This 2005-6 shirt may not carry the fond associations of the LCS tops from championship winning side of 2008-9 – the 05/06 season being one that started fine, but kind of fizzled out in October and never fully recovered, with us ending up just outside the play-offs despite a quality squad, and with us not even providing amazing entertainment regularly to make up for this, seen in our scoring just about a goal a game only. Still, there were some decent performances and a few of those were in this great top – the Naylor free kick against Stoke away stands out as one high point whilst wearing it.
When the shirt was worn that season
Vs Leeds 20/08
Vs Stoke 24/09
Vs Crewe 27/09
Vs Sheffield Utd 15/10 (but with gold shorts and socks)
Vs Watford 29/10 (but with gold shorts and socks)
Vs Brighton 01/11
Vs Coventry 02/01
Vs Leicester 04/02
Vs Reading 18/03
Vs Norwich 30/04