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Monday, February 6, 2012

Six Nations Nostalgia: Review of the France Jersey

For those of you who have visited my blog with any level of frequency, you know that, in spite of my Swedish, German, English, Scottish and Irish ancestry, France and French rugby both have a very special place in my heart. The very first rugby game I ever saw on TV was Wales-France from the old Cardiff Arms Park. When I heard 50,000 Welshmen singing their national anthem-in Welsh-it gave me goose gumps. When I saw the ball movement and the physicality of the sport(As evidenced by this clip from that match of Serge Blanco's try), I was taken hook, line and sinker.

This Six Nations season marks 30 years ago that I was smitten by this sport. A lot has changed with the game: The players are professional, tries are worth 5 points, the players are much bigger, faster and stronger.(Compare the size of the players in this clip to those who played this past weekend.)

The rugby jersey has evolved a great deal too(Does ANYBODY wear a collar with their jersey anymore?). Of the Six Nations sides, France has probably changed their jersey style and sponsorship more than any of the other sides. Some teams might experiment with different colors of their secondary or third jersey.(Like England experimenting with purple a couple of years ago, and black in the last Rugby World Cup), but the French seem to change rugby jersey designs more than a model for Yves St-Laurent prepping for the runway.

I think the people at Nike have a winner with this design for the home French Rugby Jersey that people first saw at this past Rugby World Cup.
 When you have a prop shaped physique like me, you are always a little nervous about how these new rugby jersey designs are going to look on you. ( I still have nightmares about Australian prop Matt Dunning wearing that form-fitting bright gold Wallaby jumper during the 2007 Rugby World Cup) The Jersey fit my shoulders perfectly, but was forgiving without being baggy in the middle. It's a strong, but really lightweight fabric. My wife-a blunt critic about what I wear-gave the jersey very high marks in it's style and how it looked on me.
The jersey has familiar red shield with Le Coq Gaullois and the FFR(The French Acronym for Fédération du Rugby Français, or French Rugby Federation) over the heart.

Here in the US, you can't find this jersey, but you can get it through

I can hardly wait to wear this new shirt when I go back to Albuquerque to watch some  6 Nations rugby with some of my new friends with the Aardvarks and Brujos.


  1. C'est triste de voir partir Dan Parks de l'équipe d'Ecosse un joueur très intelligent. Mois aussi j'ai découvert vraiment le rugby à Cardiff dans ma famille ( Pair )
    Vincent Clerc n'à pas encore atteint le record d'essais de Blanco ! le rugby à bien changé!

  2. Nice to find another American fan of Les Blues! I live in England, but I root for France. Thanks for the review of the new shirt. I really liked the 2010/2011 kit (navy with white on the shoulders), but haven't looked at the new one up close yet.

  3. Thanks for stopping by, and the comment!