World Cup jerseys: Best and worst

When we wear our soccer jerseys, we are not just wearing shirts. We are planting the flag. We are showing our colors. We are representin’.

Soccer jerseys — particularly during the World Cup, which starts June 12 in Brazil — are a sartorial link to action thousands of miles away, a visceral connection to something broadcast with cool efficiency on TV (or, in an even more detached way, over the Internet).

The soccer jersey blankets our lungs and heart, two organs we footy fans tend to overuse when watching a match. It covers our stomach, which too often is tied up in knots.

We tug at it in times of joy, stretching the symbols and thumping the logos in sheer, unadulterated ecstasy as we thank the Gods of the Pitch for the athletic miracle that has just put one in the back of the ol’ onion bag.


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And we pull the hem up in a makeshift handkerchief, angrily wiping moist eyes when things are not so beautiful in the beautiful game.

As important as soccer jerseys are, it must be said they are also … gulp … fashion.

CLICK ON THE PHOTO GALLERY TO THE LEFT TO SEE THE JERSEYS.

With that in mind, here’s a totally-not-serious look at the style quotient of this year’s World Cup home jerseys.

5 jerseys that score a g-o-o-o-a-l

USA

A clean design with on-the-downlow patriotism — note the subtle use of red, white and blue. The best part? It will go with almost everything in your closet. The even better part? The team’s away jersey kind of makes you look like a superhero.

Uruguay

This particular hue of ice blue is very flattering and the oh-my-gosh-I-didn’t-see-that piping on the side can visually slim your figure, which is something you should not underestimate if you are not pitch-perfect. Ha! See what I did there?

Portugal

It might not look like much (although red is the color of passion), but that kicky trim of green around the neckline and on the sleeves is just enough to make the whole thing pop without slipping into Christmas-ville.

Brazil

If you think of the whole televised picture, few colors look better against a green pitch than yellow. Well played, Brazil. Well played indeed.

Argentina

Who appreciates a slimming vertical stripe? A country that loves its beef, that’s who.

5 jerseys that get a red card