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The 25 best ever Premier League kits - including Liverpool's green shirt and Manchester United's Cantona classic

Mirror logo Mirror 6 days ago Joe Mewis
Credits: Bob Thomas Sports Photography © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: Bob Thomas Sports Photography

A lot has changed during the 25 years of the Premier League.

Transfer fees, wages, the small print of the offside rule, player diets and the price of a season ticket have all been shaken up since the brave new era was ushered in back in 1992.

But there will always be inalienable truth: fans will always take an almost unhealthy interest in replica kits.

While it's easy to sniff at the cynical nature of Premier League clubs releasing one, two or three kits every year, shirts are a big deal. After all, you spend hours, nay, days of your year watching your team play in these colours, so you don't want any eyesores on display.

With our glasses half-full we've taken a trip down memory lane to remember some of the best kits to ever grace the Premier League.

No doubt you will disagree vehemently, but here are our top 25 shirts...

25. Liverpool away 2008-09

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A homage to the club's late-'80s away kits, Liverpool dispelled Sir Alex Ferguson's claims that players would not be able to pick out team-mates in grey shirts.

No trying too hard here and a colour scheme that just works.

First player you picture wearing it: Fernando Torres

24. Everton home 1995-97

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More than meets the eye, here. It may look like a regulation blue Everton home kit, but the devil is in the details. The black collar works like a treat, it's got an undeniably cool sponsor and there's also some subtle detailing in the 90s nylon shimmer.

Chuck in some ersatz Inter Milan socks and you're onto a winner.

First player you picture wearing it: Andrei Kanchelskis

23. Manchester City third 2009-10

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Ah, the sash. A criminally under-utilised tool in modern English kit designing history.

Freshly-moneyed City looked to the past for inspiration and came up with this ditty, which is very pleasing on the eye. Southmpton's 2010-11 sashed effort is probably better, but alas, they were battling their way out of League 1 at the time.

First player you picture wearing it: Shaun Wright-Phillips

22. Burnley home 2009-10

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Burnley went back to the future in 2009, with this retro-styled shirt that commemorated their league title win 50 years earlier. The Clarets were able to sport this clean-cut, big-badged effort with a handsome collar in the top flight again, but it was not enough to inspire them to safety.

First player you picture wearing it: Robbie Blake

21. Arsenal away 1991-3

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Yes, it's busy, yes, it's all over the place… but what a glorious mess.

Arsenal's first away kit in the Premier League was opinion-splitting at the time but this almost tribal-print has aged much better than a lot of the noisy early-90s efforts that it was up against. We're believers.

First player you picture wearing it: Paul Merson

20. Chelsea away 1994-96

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Orange and at least three shades of grey? Now that shouldn't work.

But this out-there Chelsea away design from the mid-90s certainly has something about it. While the rest of the Premier League zigged, the Blues zagged as their foreign legion began to add some cosmopolitan swagger to the English top flight.

First player you picture wearing it: Ruud Gullit

19. Tottenham away 1993-95

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With a daring shoulder decor reminiscent of the kind of thing you'd see Andre Agassi wearing at the 1992 French Open, this is another kit of its time that has aged well. Kudos for the socks, too.

First player you picture wearing it: Nick Barmby

18. Arsenal home 2010-11

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The Gunners have never really had a bad home kit during the Premier League era, but this simple, clean effort is the best of the bunch.

With a hat-tip to the kind of shirts that were being worn at Highbury in the 1960s and 1970s, this unfussy effort ticks our boxes.

First player you picture wearing it: Cesc Fabregas

17. Liverpool away 1992-93

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The Premier League has not seen enough green kits during its quarter of a century.

This Liverpool away kit from the inaugural season is a devilishly handsome shade of green, features a nice big badge and you have to admire adidas' bravado in plastering those three huge stripes on the shoulder.

First player you picture wearing it: John Barnes

16. Man City 1993-95 away

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A white shirt with thin purple not-quite-pinstripe stripes doesn't sound like it should make this list, but for some reason it works. A true one-off in terms of Premier League shirts, this offbeat number is the Cool Britannia of football shirts, evoking memories of the Gallagher brothers swaggering to the cultural fore in the mid-90s.

First player you picture wearing it: Liam and Noel

15. Tottenham home 1999-2001

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A classy effort from Spurs here, which combined a retro collar and retro sponsor in Holsten with a few modern whistles and bells to create their best home kit of the Premier League era.

First player you picture wearing it: David Ginola

14. Crystal Palace home 1997-98

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Palace have a habit of mixing things up with their kit, going from thin stripes to thick stripes and even chucking in a half-and-half design back in 2013.

But this shirt - in which they were relegated in during the 1997-98 season - was executed to perfection. The slightly thinner red striping works a treat, they've got the collar right and the sponsor doesn't ruin it. Just a shame they couldn't replicate this style on the pitch that season.

First player you picture wearing it: Tomas Brolin

13. Southampton home 1993-95

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Southampton haven't been afraid to take the occasional detour from their traditional red and white stripes.

This effort from the early days of the Premier League sees them take one of the aforementioned stripes, bend it in half and put it around the neckline. It's a tad rugby league, but it floats our boat.

First player you picture wearing it: Matt Le Tissier

12. West Ham home 1999-01

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Claret and blue is a curiously popular traditional colour scheme for football clubs. While West Ham, Aston Villa and Burnley have all had plenty of stabs at it during their time in the Premier League, the Hammers' turn of the millennium effort from Fila did it best.

First player you picture wearing it: Paolo Di Canio

11. Coventry home 1996-97

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Coventry haven't always had the best track record when it comes to kits, but this Le Coq Sportif effort that featured sky blue and dark blue stripes offered up a winning combination which has not been spotted since.

First player you picture wearing it: Peter Ndlovu

10. Derby home 1997-98

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A plain white strip can be a tricky one to spice up, but the Rams' use of black trim and detailing means this one is on point. The inverting of the black and white on the two Puma logos hasn't gone unnoticed in these quarters. Kudos.

Also a classic example of a baggy '90s style shirt.

First player you picture wearing it: Paulo Wanchope

9. Sheffield Wednesday home 1992-93

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Another early days Umbro effort which gets it spot on. The sharp blue and white stripes are on-point, with no pointless flippery.

Plus you have one of the most under-rated club crests in the modern age adorning the shirt, leaving you with a cult classic among Wednesday fans.

First player you picture wearing it: Chris Waddle

8. Ipswich Town home 1992-94

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Another early-Premier League effort that gets its colour scheme spot on. The red detailing of the draw string and badge sits perfectly with the shimmering blue material, with the jaunty angle of the sponsor acting as they cherry on top.

First player you picture wearing it: John Wark

7. Blackburn home 1994-95

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The half-and-half design can be a hard one to pull off. Take the early '90s yellow and green Manchester United away number for example, which is rubbish. This Blackburn vintage keeps it nice and simple, with the dash of red at the top putting it over the top.

First player you picture wearing it: Alan Shearer

6. Liverpool home 1995-96

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A hard shirt to get wrong, Liverpool have rarely veered too far from the simple red home kit, but this one gets a tip of the hat for the swaggering v-neck which dominates the design. It gets a bonus point for being on display during the Reds famous 4-3 win over Newcastle, one of the best Premier League games we've ever seen.

First player you picture wearing it: Robbie Fowler

5. Leeds United home 1993-95

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A lesser-spotted Asics number, which gets full marks for the simple, understated yellow and blue stripe that breaks up Leeds' traditional all-white shirt. A textbook example of how to jazz up a plain shirt without throwing the kitchen sink at it.

First player you picture wearing it: Gary McAllister

4. Nottingham Forest home 1992-94

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Amazing what a few pinstripes can do. Forest's traditional red shirt was vastly improved on by that slight tweak, plus a decent collar.

Chuck in one of English football's best badges and you have an instant classic. It's just a shame that Forest were relegated wearing it during Brian Clough's final season.

And here's one for you trivia fans: It was the shirt worn by Teddy Sheringham when he netted the first Premier League goal to be scored live on TV.

First player you picture wearing it: Roy Keane

3. Wimbledon home 1994-95

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Everyone's favourite gang of football ne'er do wells may have ruffled more than a few feathers during their time in the top flight, but they sure looked the part.

A smart kit that gets its shades of blue and yellow spot on without too much else going on, it was a darn sight prettier than they football they used to play.

First player you picture wearing it: Vinnie Jones

2. Man United home 1992-94

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A classy effort from the first-ever Premier League champions. A strong collar that jettisons buttons for lace plus a pleasing early-90s shimmer mean this kit has plenty going for it without it being too busy.

This has aged very well.

First player you picture wearing it: Eric Cantona

1. Newcastle home 1995-97

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Fittingly, Kevin Keegan's merry band of entertainers turned out in the Premier League's best-ever kit.

It's hard to get a Newcastle shirt too wrong (a home one, at least). However, this effort features Newcastle Brown Ale as the sponsor - complete with the blue star logo featuring the silhouette of the Tyne Bridge - giving it a sense of local identity that is sorely lacking in an age of unknown Far East gambling companies adorning 130-year-old football club's shirts.

The fact that they had one of the Premier League's coolest ever players wearing it helps, too.

First player you picture wearing it:David Ginola

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