As jersey week around SB Nation’s soccer continues, we look at what is widely considered the worst jersey in Crew history. To see what Drew Niccum believes is the best jersey in Crew history, click here.
Legend has it that Columbus Crew SC holds the title for worst kit since Major League Soccer began back in 1996, although there were certainly some bad ones in the early years. The Crew is known for the team’s yellow banana kit. But former owner Anthony Precourt decided to put a twist on the jersey the team would wear in 2016 after failing to win the club’s second MLS Cup title the previous year.
This kit, which was called the ‘For Columbus kit,’ was supposed to reflect the Columbus flag. While it had the colors, it was not representative of the Crew or Columbus’ capital city. Conspiracy theorists like to say that this was a punishment. Others tied it into the possible relocation that would be announced the following year. Nonetheless, it’s still terrible to look at.
In 2016, the Black & Gold donned these ‘For Columbus’ kits. A white base, with a yellow accent down the center of the front and blue trim. It was accompanied by blue shorts, the same color as the trim in the jersey top.
There were some elegant minor details within the jersey, however. At the bottom left-hand side of the jersey on the front, was an emblem of the flag of the City of Columbus, in which the kit was inspired. On the inside of the top, the official seal of the City of Columbus was printed, in which the crest lays over the human heart.
Here is a full graphic of the ‘For Columbus’ kits:
While some considered it beautiful, as evidenced by how many are still worn at MAPFRE Stadium on game day, there were plenty of Crew fans who hated the uniform, and needless to say, the team did not do very well in that kit. Maybe that was also a curse?
Columbus had arguably the worse season in club history during 2016, going 8-14-12 and only gaining 36 points that year. The Black & Gold scoring 50 goals and allowed 58 in 34 games. The Crew did not qualify for the playoffs and finished in ninth place in the Eastern Conference in Gregg Berhalter’s third year as head coach. The Black & Gold didn’t win their first game in the ‘For Columbus’ until a 2-0 win against the New England Revolution 2-0 at Gillette Stadium in late August of that season.
When the kit was announced prior to the regular season, social media exploded with reactions, most of them negative, as to what the Crew would wear in 2016.
The Columbus Crew unveil MLS’s ugliest kit for 2016 https://t.co/vsU6hBzYsh— K E T I K (@___Syahrul) February 10, 2016
But we have to give the club’s social media team props at the time for putting together this masterpiece. The Black & Gold put their spin on Jimmy Kimmel’s segment Mean Tweets, by having players read mean tweets about the ‘For Columbus’ kit.
While there are certainly still some fans who wear their ‘For Columbus’ jerseys proudly, 2016 was not a positive year in Crew history. The look of the Black & Gold certainly didn’t help matters as it was hard to sing “We all cheer for a yellow soccer team” when the kits weren’t black and yellow.