We’re well underway with another soccer season (or if you’re an MLS fan, almost finished with another season), and there are no shortage of story lines already playing out. You may have noticed many of the world’s best are sporting some new threads this fall, so here’s a roundup of the most interesting new looks for 2011-12.
1. Barca Breaks from History
The best team in the world is debuting a pair of major uniform changes this season. For the first time, Barca's jersey's have a paid sponsor on the front. After years of sporting the logo of charitable organization UNICEF on the front, Barca now sports "Qatar Foundation" on the front of its jerseys with UNICEF relegated to the back. Additionally, Barca introduced an all-black away uniform this season for the first time ever.
2. Red Devils in Blue
Manchester United's home red jersey is one of the most recognizable in the world. But their alternate uniforms are seemingly different each season, with numerous color and design changes over the years. This year is no exception, as England’s most famous club sports a blue and black striped number for the first time in their history.
3. Chelsea Looks Black and Blue
Chelsea is coming off a rough 2010-11 campaign, but that's not what has them looking black and blue. The West Londoners introduced a unique away uniform this season that features light blue squares on the upper half that fade into an all-black lower half. It’s a futuristic look for a team desperate to hoist some Champions League hardware in the near future.
4. Man City Channels Milan
The fastest-rising team on the planet, Manchester City, dug through the history books to come up with their new away uniform for 2011-12. Inspired by the kit they wore during their glory years in the late 1960's, the look nonetheless bears an undeniable similarity to Italian giants AC Milan.
5. Madrid Sees Red
For the first time in 38 years, Spanish giants Real Madrid will have a red jersey in their arsenal this season. Who knows, maybe this will help Cristiano Ronaldo and Co. finally get past Barcelona.
6. Marseille It Ain't So
Say what you will about Marseille's alternate jersey, but one's thing for sure: You won't soon forget it. The reigning Ligue 1 runners-up combined swatches of orange, black and light blue seemingly at random to come up with this unique look.
7. Juventus Thinks Pink
Pink uniforms are nothing new in European soccer. Serie A club Palermo has long worn pink, and Getafe in La Liga also sports a pink jersey this season. Everton in the EPL and even Barcelona have sported pink in recent years. Interestingly, Juventus may have the oldest tie to pink. When the club first formed at the turn of the 20th century, they were accidentally sent pink uniforms from their supplier and had no choice but to wear them, though they quickly changed to their now famous white-and-black striped jersey. Juventus will honor that tradition by wearing pink on the road this year, begging the question what will happen when Juve visits Palermo?
8. Inter Stays Classy
The 2009-10 Champions League winners are well known for their traditional blue-and-black striped home jersey, but this year they are putting a fresh spin on that color combination for their away jerseys. Inter added a black and blue sash to their traditional away whites, and the result is pure class.
A little closer to home, Mexico's UNAM Pumas continue to boast the fiercest jerseys in CONCACAF. It's nice to see something other than a brand name front and center on a team's jersey — especially when it's this cool.
10. Howard Blends
The first-choice keeper for Everton (and the U.S.) is making quite a statement with this camo look. Whether it helps him to shut down opposing forwards, we'll have to wait and see.