Review: Philosophy Football T-shirts

Image of a man wearing a Philosophy Football T-shirt

I’ve been a Philosophy Football customer since they started business 20 years ago, so when an email about their new World Cup T-shirts arrived in my inbox, I got in touch to ask if I could have one. There were two reasons for this shameless act of blagging. Obviously, I wanted one and, not having a job at the moment, thought I could pay in kind with a review. Secondly, I’m a big fan of their work and wanted to make more people aware of it. To my delight, they thought this was a good idea and I’m now the proud owner of their 32 Nations shirt.

For anyone unfamiliar with Philosophy Football, they define themselves as ‘sporting outfitters of intellectual distinction’ and, with shirts featuring quotes by thinkers including Camus, Nietzsche and Cantona  yes, the infamous sardines make an appearance  in their range, you can see why.

Several of them juxtapose these highbrow musings with squad numbers on the back, which has always made me smile. Think of the Monty Python Philosophers’ Football Match sketch  and they’ve got a shirt for that too, as it happens  and you get the idea.

Close up detail of the design on a Philosophy Football T-shirt

I really like the retro look of the shirts; they’re a welcome throwback to when the game was about glory, doing things in style  speaking of which, that’s part of a quote from their Danny Blanchflower offering  rather than using it as a vehicle for making obscene amounts of money. This makes them a great alternative to expensive replica shirts that loyal fans feel compelled to replace every season.

So on to this specific one and, unsurprisingly, it’s in the colours synonymous with this year’s host nation and lover of the beautiful game – and, yes, that’s a quote from one Edson Arantes do Nascimento which is also in the Philosophy Football range. As you can see from the picture above, the design takes the form of a map of Brazil with the edges defined by the names of the countries competing in this year’s tournament. It’s 100% cotton and very comfortable and I think it looks great.

With both the World Cup and Father’s Day around the corner, I heartily recommend it – there’s a reason why I already own several of their shirts! If football isn’t your thing, they also have offerings in their range from a variety of other sports  Wimbledon and the Tour de France are among them  as well as plenty based on dissenters and philosophers.

A great gift idea for for the discerning football fans in your life.


  1. Jonathan

    I enjoyed reading this post, especially as I have both of the philosophy football books that they published a few years back. As a football fan who studied philosophy (along with French) at university, they were ideal reading (although perhaps not for philosophy coursework assignments).

    1. Post

      Thanks Jonathan. I have to admit that I didn’t know about the books they produced – and I call myself a fan of their work!

  2. Pingback: Christmas gift ideas for dads - Diary of the Dad

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