Barcelona have unveiled their brand new 2021-22 third kit, which will be worn exclusively in the Champions League by the club’s men’s and women’s teams this season, and it’s a beauty.

OK, so technically speaking the jersey, which bears the same red-and-blue colours as the Catalan club’s famous home kit, is not really a third kit at all, but what the club describe as “a creative reinterpretation of the traditional blaugrana stripes.”

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Emphasising the club’s close-knit relationship with their local community, the design gives Barca’s iconic colours a vibrant and contemporary reworking, which they say pays homage to all the young creative talent who live and work in their home city.

The various prints, illustrations and patterns used are inspired by drawings of the city and all its neighbourhoods, and created by Barca supporters. The background designs reflect the five central districts of Poble-sec, Poblenou, Gracia, Raval and of course Les Corts, home to Camp Nou.

A tableau of historic landmarks and architecture are depicted in silhouette, including the beloved Les Tres Xemeneies (three chimneys) that sit atop the old Poble-sec power station, as well as the original La Masia training lodge situated just across the road from Barca’s stadium.

Just to cap it off, local band “Stay Homas” have written and performed an acoustic song to accompany the launch, which features the group jamming on a Barcelona rooftop while special guests such as Alexia Putellas, Sergino Dest, Memphis Depay and Frenkie de Jong appear remotely via video call.

The wisdom of producing a third kit using the exact same colours as the club’s home kit is questionable, but you simply can’t argue with the results.

They may be facing their first foray into European football without Lionel Messi among their flock in 15 years, but at least Barcelona are going to look the part under the floodlights in midweek.

To that end, the new Champions League kit will be worn for the first time at the Camp Nou next week when Barca kick off their 2021-22 group stage campaign with a huge Group E game against Bayern Munich.

Barca fans will be hoping that their team doesn’t suffer the same fate as the last time these two sides met: Bayern destroyed Barca 8-2 in a stunning quarterfinal win en route to winning the 2019-20 Champions League title.





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