Nike and the French Football Federation: United by our Differences

Hi everyone,
Nike, who officially took over from 38 years of partnership between adidas and the French Federation, introduced the new French Football kit. A very interesting positioning where the Beaverton firm put forward the multi-ethnic french values, the sustainable story and the freedom factor. Let’s check it out.

Let’s start with a video:

Vive le Football Libre
In a previous article, I was emphasizing on the values Nike put forward: Freedom, going against the grain, make it different, audacity. These values are encapsulated within not only the kit but in the football philosophy the new head coach, Laurent Blanc is outlining.

Create an attractive and historic shirt
Romain Gardair (Global Product Director Nike Football) emphasises on the fact that the new kit had to be comfortable, attractive and historic. The elegantly designed kits combine French style and tradition with Nike product innovation to deliver a distinctive kit engineered to maximize performance and minimize environmental impact.

Mark Parker, (Nike President and CEO) added: “France is one of the most successful and well known teams in the world and we look forward to delivering innovative products to help them perform on the pitch. This is a significant moment for Nike Football and we are proud to be the official partner of the French Federation and to be part of the future of French football.”


The kit design adheres to the tradition and standards of French style and design excellence while enabling players to perform at their best every time they pull on the famous French shirt. The innovative, lightweight, technical design and features Nike Dri-FIT technology and engineered ventilation systems to help keep players cool, coupled with ergonomic fit and soft cotton feel for player comfort.

Still going green
For those familiar with the football lounge, you know by now that all Nike Federation kits during the 2010 World Cup were made of recycled plastic bottles. You also know that Nike extended the green initiative to the whole industry. The new kit embraces Nike’s considered design approach and is Nike’s most environmentally sustainable kit to date, with shirt and shorts made from a microfibre polyester that is derived entirely from recycled plastic bottles. For the shirt, this material is combined with organic cotton (96% recycled polyester, 4% organic cotton).

France is a multi-ethnic country
Yes, France is a multi-ethnic country. The kit outlines the cultural differences within the french society. A melting pot, a wide variety of backgrounds, religions, ethnics, upbringings under the FFF crest. This crest symbolises these differences under the following sentence: “United by our differences”.

Prior to that, Nike will reveal a new campaign around the kit and the partnership with the FFF, entitled “Vive Le Football Libre“, capturing the spirit of the new era of French Football. This will include a digital and print advertising campaign, as well as a dramatic TV spot.

The dramatic voiceover to the TV spot is the poem from the famous “Duel” scene in the play Cyrano de Bergerac, narrated by French hip-hop artist Oxmo Puccino. The spot draws a parallel between the duel scene, in which Cyrano confronts a prince who dared threaten him, and French footballers at different levels competing against their opponents.

Through the verse, the audacity, creativity and freedom of French football is expressed. Those talents are expressing themselves in various places, Clairefontaine for the French team, but also the playgrounds of Belleville, Marseille and La Courneuve for the amateur players. [Source: Nikemedia]

A new milestone in football marketing with Nike sponsoring the French Football Federation. The new France kit will be worn for the first time in the game against Brasil at Stade de France on 9th February. The new kit and the Nike Sportswear FFF product will be available at retail from 5th February.

Karl Lusbec

Some pictures from Football Shirt Culture


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6 thoughts on “Nike and the French Football Federation: United by our Differences

  1. Getting Nike as the French partner in football is a big step and what might be labeled as a big change in French football. It will benefit the publicity and the status of France in terms of football considering their performance at the previous World Cup. A great move..

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