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With jacket and hoodie season just around the corner, I thought we could spend some time today talking about the brand spankin’ new Team England zip up hoodie. It’s a quiet and unassuming jacket without a whole lot of flair, but if you’re like me, that’s a great thing. That said, there is one surprise with this jacket that you’ll enjoy.

Perhaps inspired by the storied English weather, the jacket is colored entirely gray. It’s a smattering of varying shades and tints of gray, but that’s all the color variation you’ll see. Stitched into the left breast is the England team crest, while the Umbro logo is stitched into the right breast. That’s basically it for the look of the jacket, save the shoulder stitching and the elastic cuffs. Like I said, it’s quiet and doesn’t call too much attention to itself. That’s okay, though, because a jacket should be comfortable and warm before it should be flashy. That is definitely the case with this jacket.

This soccer jacket is made out of 77% cotton and 23% polyester, so it’s soft and slightly elastic. The inside is noticeably softer than the outside, but that’s the way we want it, right? One thing to note about the inside is that the hood lining has more of a cotton bed sheet feel, differing from the fluffy texture of the body. It’s only a guess, but I think this is to lessen the resistance against your head, making it easier to put up or down. The hood itself is also a bit different from most zip up hoods, and this is due to the surprise I mentioned in the opening paragraph: the zipper. Most zippers are straight up and down from the throat, down to the navel and terminate at the bottom of the waist. Not this one. This zipper has a slight angle to it that then brings the hood up to about mid-throat, around the adam’s apple. The zipper itself starts out about mid waist and gradually slants to the left side of the throat. I personally hated this at first, but once I put the jacket on and saw how far the zipper extends, my opinion changed. While it is a little jarring at first to have the zipper come all the way to the throat, it’s easy to adjust. It’ll be useful on those especially windy days, when the air usually forces its way to the inside of your jacket. Instead, you can zip it all the way up and stay warm.

In terms of fit, this jacket is more or less true to size. Depending on how you prefer your jacket fit, you may want to try a size smaller than your regular. For example, I wear a medium and fit comfortably into this jacket’s size medium; however, I could easily see myself going to a small just to get a more snug fit on the sleeves. Width isn’t an issue, though. It fits the torso like you’d expect.

One of these bad boys will run you $64.99, which might be a bit steep for the casual England fan. If all you’re looking for is a plain jacket to get through the fall and early winter, then you may want to look at some non-national squad jackets. If you’re a fan of the England squad or even an EPL team, then I’d say give it a try. It’s a quality product made from quality material, so if you take care of it, you’ll have the jacket for years to come.

Written by: Kris Dyer, contributing editor, soccerprose.com


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