An incredible summer of football continues with the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations just around the corner.
This year the competition, which is being hosted by Egypt, has been expanded from 16 to 24 teams, meaning there are more debutants than usual.
Indeed, three nations – Madagascar, Mauritania and Burundi – will appear at the Afcon for the very first time, while past champions such as Nigeria, Ivory Coast and Ghana are all set to take part once again.
And of course, more teams means more kits.
We’ve had a look at the home kits of all 24 nations competing at the 2019 Afcon and ranked them for your viewing pleasure.
Burundi kits for Cup of Nations also released. Same supplier as for the Madagascar jerseys, but unfortunately plain shirts. 🇧🇮 pic.twitter.com/050roJ3Pcl
— BestOfFootballShirts (@FootballShirtDK) April 30, 2019
Tournament debutants Burundi will be delighted to even be in Egypt but unfortunately their red home shirts, made by Garman, leave a lot to be desired. Those faded dots just aren’t for us.
23. DR Congo
🇨🇩 DR Congo kits for AFCON 2019. pic.twitter.com/ac1zoFFwT5
— AFCON 2019 (@AFCON2019_en) May 18, 2019
Designers O’Neills have used a thin sash to split the colours of the DR Congo flag, but it doesn’t look great, nor does the barely visible leopard’s head from the country’s coat of arms.
Made by Uhlsport, Tanzania’s blue shirt is modestly smart but the black and green colours of the flag smeared across the front like streaks of paint are quite odd.
— Pro Soccer Kits ⚽️ (@prosoccerkits) June 5, 2019
Angola’s red home kit suffers from having too much going on. There are some decent ideas thought up by manufacturer Lacatoni, but the circular pattern is bizarre and distracts from other areas of the strip.
Guinea like to have the three colours of their flag separated for their shirt, shorts and socks. It can look a little garish, and Macron’s curious flourishes don’t help in that regard.
— BabaGol (@BabaGol_) April 30, 2019
This one might come down to personal preference. If you like plain kits, you might like Madagascar’s green home shirt until you notice Garman’s pattern up the middle. It’s certainly different.
Toujours au service de l'équipe, le capitaine l'a encore démontré hier par son coup-franc magistral pour donner la victoire aux Écureuils. Un mot sur le match de Stéphane Sessegnon contre la Guinée ? pic.twitter.com/zUmEHzU4C4
— Bénin Football (@benin_football) June 12, 2019
Benin go into the tournament without an official kit provider. As such, the strip they have been wearing in the build-up is commendable if a little unspectacular.
— Victor Wanyama (@VictorWanyama) June 14, 2019
Macron’s Kenya strip is fine in that it is understated, but that collar design takes away from the rest of the otherwise respectable kit.
Much like Kenya, Namibia’s agreeable all-red kit is let down by Kappa’s strange decision to put a huge white strap across the collar and shoulders.
— Football Fashion (@footballfashion) June 15, 2019
Perhaps the reason some manufacturers put a pattern in the middle of the shirt is because it looks like a training top without a sponsor. Take Umbro’s yellow Zimbabwe kit, for example.
Instead of using the red, yellow and green from their flag as they have in the past, Guinea-Bissau have dispensed with yellow this time and designer Qelemes has complimented the red kit with minimal green.
Subscribe to Squawka’s Youtube channel here.
— Bevis Mugabi (@B_M321) June 14, 2019
Here’s another with a pattern that takes away from a shirt’s understated nature. Unlike Madagascar, though, Mafro’s Uganda strip uses the colours of the flag down the middle, which is more appropriate.
🔴⚪️Les nouveaux maillots de la sélection nationale sont disponibles sur le site https://t.co/WNd31r3jNU.
Le maillot "third" est d'ores et déjà en rupture de stock quelques heures seulement après sa sortie en raison de la très forte demande. #Tunisie 🇹🇳#CAN2019 pic.twitter.com/XiL2bq651S
— Tunisie Football (@tunisiefootball) June 10, 2019
Kappa have gone with a patterned design for Tunisia’s red home shirt. Fans of traditional kits won’t be overly keen but the design has a certain attractiveness to it.
Senegal will play in the same Puma kit the Under-20s have been wearing at the World Cup, as pictured above. Again, the almost hidden pattern won’t be for everyone but it generally makes for a satisfying strip.
Sneaking in at number 10 is Mali’s kit. Some might accuse designer Airness of overkill, but the eagle seemingly set to land on top of the number on the front is a clever, distinctive touch.
Puma’s Ghana offering is next up. The colours of the flag neatly line the collar without being over the top, and the famous black star gives the shirt its uniqueness.
Adidas’ three stripe design has become iconic, particularly among modern football shirts. The stripes give Morocco’s otherwise simple look a bit of flair on the shoulders and shorts.
— Bonface Osano (@bonfaceosano) May 21, 2019
Mauritania’s green home kit, made by AB Sport, could be accused of being excessive in its design. But the flame-like stripes work well with the rest of the shirt, as does the offbeat font for the number.
— Mohamed Salah (@MoSalah) June 17, 2019
Puma have gone with a wavy stripe design on the front of Egypt’s shirt, which contrasts nicely with the plain red back, white shorts and black socks.
5. Ivory Coast
Yet more proof that sticking to one colour can sometimes be for the better. Puma have gone with a futuristic panelled design for Ivory Coast’s orange kits – a wise decision.
4. South Africa
South Africa generally wear a yellow shirt with small green parts to decorate it. Nike has used a patterned shoulder design to add the green this time, and the result evokes memories of Brazil’s best kits.
The Le Coq Sportif logo accommodates a football shirt delightfully, making us wonder why they don’t make more kits. Cameroon have certainly benefited from the design, which is top-heavy in a distinctive way.
— The NFF 🇳🇬 (@thenff) June 9, 2019
Nike’s Nigeria kit received plenty of praise when it was revealed ahead of last summer’s World Cup, and the Super Eagles have stuck with it for the Afcon. The design borders on too much, but in fact it’s just right. It’s set to go down as a classic.
— Les Verts d'Algérie (@LesVerts) June 4, 2019
Our winner. The Algeria strip is similar to Adidas’ Germany design, with its unusual but easy-on-the-eye pattern across the chest. What’s more, the typical Adidas stripes and sleeve-ends look as smart as ever.