The adidas Football x PP Collection Season 1 took inspiration from the worlds of fashion, streetwear and hip-hop with a bespoke range of football and lifestyle products. But, what do the people in the fashion industry think? We put the question to them.
The perception of football has been somewhat of a faux pas within the fashion industry, mainly due to sports brands trying and failing to get it quite right. The transition has to be seamless, and previous fallers have struggled to hit the spot with those embedded within the fashion industry. Nike have tried it with mixed success, most recently with the NikeLab x Olivier Rousteing collection and now we're determining if adidas are strutting along the red carpet to the fashion party or ducking behind Paul Pogba to sneak past the bouncer on the door. Have they succeeded? Or at the very least, have they paved a way for future ventures?
Charlie Teasdale: Deputy Style Editor, Esquire
I was actually at an event recently (Marcel Desailly and Robert Pires in conversation ― amazing) and Desailly was asked if the pressure on players was more now that they are so visible and accessible on social media, and he said he thought they were actually under less pressure. He mentioned Pogba, saying that the ‘power’ was very much on his side (and the side of his agent etc), rather than Manchester United.
This collection is a prime example of the sway that individual players have now, and is indicative of the gradual shift of focus from brands, clubs and products to individual players. The collection feeds right into the ‘Wavy Garms’ trend for sportswear-as-streetwear, and that black bomber is seriously nice – but if adidas and Manchester United collaborated on a collection like this, it wouldn’t have the same eruptive effect (despite them being the ‘biggest’ club in the world). Also, Pogba is an incredible player, which has lead to the creation of his brand. It will be interesting to track his trajectory as a player and a brand over the next few years.
Ismael: Fashion Student at IFM and Fashion Marketing Consultant
This relationship reminds me of adidas and David Beckham. They are similar characters, football stars and fashion icons – even if Beckham was much more elegant. Pogba’s personality is so strong that I would have been surprised had adidas not launched his own line. As soon as he signed, I knew they would create an entire universe around him and the brand.
It’s pretty cool that football is linked with fashion these days, it gives to football an alternative way to create something new. Also, it gives to soccer an image of coolness and not a sport with people that have a bad taste. If you look at the strong relation between fashion & sport during the past five years, you understand that the link between football and fashion is natural. The adidas Football x PP collection is an example, but you have other great examples: adidas Football x Gosha, Agi & Sam x Topman, Nike x Sophnet, Umbro x House of Holland or adidas x Yohji Yamamoto.
For me this is a sportswear collection with a touch of modernity that tries to reach the fashion sphere. If I have to put the collection on the fashion landscape, I will put it in the sportswear & mass market part of fashion. Somehow between Kooples Sport and Zara.
Remi Macario: Global Product Manager for Ready to Wear at Christian Dior
The collection is quite sober considering the style of the player. I think it is clever as it will be able to be used for a long time in keeping with and as a function of the performances of Paul Pogba. I think it's essentially the counter-attack from adidas to Nike’s CR7. I was expecting the use of a lot of black, gold, zips and other details that are pretty well-used by luxury brands and are in vogue with young players and the youth of this generation.
In my opinion, I would have liked to have seen them reinterpret certain classic pieces from the adidas locker room. For example, the long black parka from the 90s with the diagonal chest pockets and the ‘Equipment’ logo. We are seeing oversize logos everywhere at the moment on runway shoes and the street. A reinterpretation of this jacket in a technical fabric, a crazy colour and the big PP logo would have been audacious.
To fit properly into the fashion world at large, the collection needed to be broader and a bit a bit more detached from sport. A proper off-pitch silhouette (rather than just a hoody or sweatpants) with more sophisticated (noble) materials would have allowed the collection to reach higher heights.
Riccardo Chiudioni: Fashion Assistant at Men's Health
Athleisure is undoubtedly a trend and a staple in today's wardrobe and you would think that footballer and athletes should be the go to when it comes to this: given their knowledge and time spent sporting these activewear aimed, fashion borrowed pieces. Although nailing it is not as easy as it might seem and sticking a celebrity's name on your products won't help turning a brand into a fashion sensation.
The adidas Football x Paul Pogba collection shows how adidas have moved from a sponsorship relationship with the player to a more sophisticated one which has allowed them to come up with a bespoke range of football and fashion products inspired by Paul's ideas and creativity.
What are your thoughts on the adidas x PP collection? Drop us a line below.