Manchester United 'sexist' kit designed to give fans 'a choice', say Adidas

The kit not a replica but part of a lifestyle range.

Click to follow

German sportswear giant adidas have defended the design of the new Manchester United women's kit that was branded 'sexist' and 'discriminatory' over the weekend.

The brand was criticised by some fans on social media because of a plunging neckline and lack of a black stripe that meant it differed quite a bit from the men's kit.

However, Adidas said it took fans' views into account before producing the kit, making it different from the replica shirt to give supporters a choice.

"Adidas provides an adult shirt which is a replica of what the players wear," a spokesperson told the Guardian. "Based on research from fans, we also offer a women’s shirt as part of our lifestyle range of products. This range has a slightly different design and fit to give fans a choice."

Nike did not produce a women's kit last season, while Adidas pointed out that they make women's kit for the majority of the clubs they sponsor.

It is the first United shirt made by Adidas since 1992 after the company outbid American rivals Nike with a mammoth 10-year, £750million deal earlier this year. Nike, who had made United's kits since 2002, decided not to bid after the Adidas offer dwarfed the previous £23.5m-a-year deal.

The kit was defended by a number of users on The Independent's Facebook page, with the consensus being that the kit was definitely not 'sexist'.

Ashley Young, Juan Mata and Daley Blind show off the new Manchester United kit

Here are some of the responses:

Deborah Gregson: The shirt is not remotely 'sexist'. If you've actually seen it on a person it's not remotely low cut. However to be honest I've not bought shirts the last few years because high necklines look horrific on me because of my large chest. A v neck is more flattering on a LOT of women, I have no idea how this is sexist in any way.

Leanne Loveridge: Lower cut on larger chested women is a lot more flattering. I don't see the problem here at all. If you don't like the lower cut wear the men's top.

Dominique Crystal Simone Evans: I'd be more inclined to think it is sexist if they only make men's style tops and expect women to fit into a men's style! Clearly I have a different shape to a man and therefore need a different style! Wtf?

Cassidy R. Scaglione: Ohmahgerd!!!! No black stripes!!! Awful!!! Also, sorry, but a different neckline is not sexist.... Sexist would be if they produced only walking shoes instead of running shoes for women, cause girls aren't as fast as boys... This is just another case of the easily offended "protest addicts" waiting eagerly for the next opportunity for some armchair activism.

Laura Philpot: Football shirts are so unflattering for women about time they sorted it out u might get more women wear them now ...definitely not sexist !!

Claire Louise Sheridan: I am a feminist and I don't find this sexist in the slightest. They're just offering two kinds of neckline. Women can buy either, there's no law against that. The neckline is more flattering for some women's shapes. There's nothing bad about wanting to look a certain way.. if you don't want to look that way, wear the traditional cut. I think it's good it's being inclusive to appeal to more women who might enjoy football but also fashion. No crime in that. To me, it's simply more inclusive.

Jenni Davies: High necks can be a nightmare for women with larger boobs. I don't know any women with larger boobs who choose to wear high necks. Just saying.

And more from Twitter:

@IndyFootball @Independent coz it's so hard to buy just the normal one? It's not sexist to show breasts ffs

— Claire (@xAngelLust) August 2, 2015

@IndyFootball @Independent Yes how dare they alter a shirt to incorporate a style of clothing many women like.

— Alex (@4luxs) August 2, 2015

@IndyFootball @Independent this is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. I think the world needs to grow up and so acting so pathetic

— Carl Eaves (@carleaves_24) August 2, 2015

@IndyFootball @Independent A plunging neckline, like tons of women's clothing. Non issue.

— Alex (@4luxs) August 2, 2015

@IndyFootball it's not like there's any cleavage or anything. People are just looking for something to get their panties in a bunch over.

— t.dean (@therealtdean) August 3, 2015

Manchester United begin their Premier League campaign against Tottenham. The kit can be found on United's official website.