More and more fans are buying retro football shirts instead of going to the official shop of their club or national team to get the latest equipment available.
Except in the case of collectors (who estimate the monetary value of each vintage outfit), there is no explanation for the phenomenon of vintage shirts. Maybe it's nostalgia. In any case, buying old football shirts is a growing trend among football lovers.
There are many football teams that have marked history: the mythical team of Roberto Baggio in the World Cup in 1994, that of Cruyff with Ajax of Rinus Michels, that of Pelé in the 1954 World Cup, that of Maradona with Napoles in 1986 or that of the 'Golden Kid' with Argentina of the Hand of God.
But buying vintage football shirts is no easy task. The existence of replicas and forged signatures, the difficulty to find period clothes or the problem of the exact valuation of this type of products are some of the complications that can arise.
In the following lines you will find some of the best tips for buying vintage t-shirts from your favorite clubs and teams. Will you join us?
What you should know before buying vintage football shirts
Obtaining period clothing requires a fairly extensive research process. Buying vintage football shirts is not like buying last season's official clothing. There is no regulated market, suppliers are scarce and counterfeits are abundant.
Below you'll find some of the best tips for getting the most iconic outfits of all time. Don't miss them!
Beware of appraisal prices
Valuation is an essential step in the process of purchasing a vintage t-shirt. The selling price is not written in stone, and buyers will get it right by questioning it and determining for themselves to what extent that price conforms to reality.
Comparative analysis is the most useful in this regard. It's really easy to do: just search for the selling prices of similar garments (in terms of club, date or dorsal) and average them, so you know what the fairest price would be.
It is true that a dress of Maradona with the Naples reached a starting price of 3 thousand euros and that another equipment of Zinedine Zidane of 1998 was auctioned 88 thousand euros. But these examples should not be taken into account, as they were models used in matches of great historical relevance.
Most of the retro jerseys did not parade on the pitches, as they were sold to the public and, therefore, their value should be lower than those used in official matches.
It is important, therefore, to review the price of clothing with a magnifying glass, in order to avoid making unnecessary payments for shirts without a price justified by some special attribute (e.g. a player's signature).
Difference between replicas and authentic T-shirts
When buying retro football shirts, knowing how to distinguish counterfeits from real ones is an invaluable advantage. There are many replicas on eBay and other Internet portals.
What do we need to be aware of to determine the authenticity of an item of equipment? There are small signs that can help us: inefficient reproduction of the shield, an unusually low selling price or very poor quality materials.
This last question is of great interest to vintage equipment enthusiasts. Most fake garments use polyester, but in a uniform manner, while official brands often use different types of fabric depending on sporting needs. For example, the current shirts of Real Madrid, AC Milan or Manchester United have a porous fabric in the armpit area to improve perspiration.
In this sense, the finish of the shirt is very relevador. Nike, Adidas, Puma, Umbro and other manufacturers made very sophisticated designs. The replicas, on the other hand, have simpler and more ordinary finishes.
Find the best suppliers
Although there are several providers on the Internet, not all are equally recommended. The aforementioned eBay or even Amazon have proved to be spaces with plenty of replicas, where authentic t-shirts shine for their audience.
In this sense, it is much more advisable to buy old soccer shirts in specialized stores, such as The Football Market, an ecommerce of reference in this type of products. And there is no better guarantee than dealing with professionals.
Is it signed? Guarantees its authenticity
The signature of players increases the value and emblem of an item of clothing, which is why its price is higher, which can reach unexpectedly high levels.
However, buying retro football shirts with this characteristic carries an obvious risk: that the signature in question is false. In early 2018 the Englishman David Rennie was imprisoned for six years after defrauding a million pounds from buyers around the world with clothing and sports teams with false signatures.
To avoid being a victim of this kind of common scam, it is best to authenticate the signature on the shirt with the help of a specialist.
In view of the above, buying old football shirts is far from a challenge. But it is important to know some of these good practices in order to make first class acquisitions, thus making the available capital profitable.
For lovers of vintage shirts, buying and selling this type of product can be a very lucrative business, especially in the long term. What could be the value in 2030 of Messi's first team with Barcelona FC in 2003? Although it is difficult to answer this question, we can ensure that its value will have increased.