In just a few short days, the World Cup should be all that matters. The tournament has become a month long holiday of sorts in which all just seems right with our world. We obviously kid ourselves and I am glad to have come to grips with this reality thanks to the help of certain releases this past week which have reminded me that this is as much a time to look out into the world as it is an opportunity to also look into ourselves.

The first eye-opening release this past week came courtesy of Lack of Guidance. The Dutch brand should be familiar now to most of you. It began merely with the intent of delivering stellar design by reinterpreting some of soccer’s most recognizable logos, but has matured into a brand who wants its designs to now actually mean something. Their latest effort is one of their most significant to date as through it the brand is able to ask some real tough questions of its own homeland.

Reflective, evaluative, and self-critical, the project is premised on the simple fact that the World Cup is always a time where we see ourselves become cheerleaders of nations other than our own. While we usually have no affinity to these teams other than the players we admire, Lack of Guidance points to the irony that its own Dutch people do have ties to another nation which they will still not support. What is worse is that now they should have more reason to support this nation seeing that the Dutch themselves will not be taking part in the tournament.

The nation in question is none other than Morocco whose redesigned crest adorns the front of the brand’s retro style jersey. Interestingly, Morocco’s roster includes 7 Dutchmen of Moroccan descent whose names are inscribed on the shirt’s back. As a whole, the product functions as a call to action to show solidarity with a community often marginalized in Dutch society. For Lack of Guidance, there is obviously no better way to do this than through soccer.


While Lack of Guidance’s effort took a more subtle approach, Fokohaela’s offering is more provocative and in your face. Once again a discourse on a nation that will not be participating in this year’s World Cup, Fokohaela’s designs come on the heel’s of Childish Gambino’s “This is America,” a song which which mirrors some of the same issues seen here. The first design touches on the topic of police shootings of unarmed Black men. Its defining decorative feature is a recurring target image with the message of the Black Lives Matter movement of “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” interspersed throughout.

The second design on the other hand is a commentary on America’s mass shootings. It reinterprets the American flag into bullet holes and blood drips yet still lays out a clearer message for all to see. The “Slave 2 Guns” statement across the back lays bare the troubling question of how a nation can prioritize the right to own a gun over the personal safety of its citizens.

The two jerseys are set against the backdrop of the World Cup, a time in which every nation is so determined to demonstrate the best of themselves. Fokohaela’s jerseys force us to step away from this fantasy and instead confront some serious and uncomfortable truths. The experience of wearing or just seeing this jersey on someone else can therefore be cathartic in a way as it is through being truthful and critical of our own reality that we can be our nation’s strongest fans or patriots. So let us be accepting of the image we as Americans are projecting to the world, however, let us not resign ourselves to the danger that this image always has to be so.

Fokohaela’s jerseys are available here. 25% of their proceeds will benefit the Black Lives Matter movement. Lack of Guidance’s shirt, however, is already sold out.


What is one thing that Tottenham and Arsenal have in common? The only thing, in my opinion, is probably that they are both teams and eternal rivals from north London… and nothing else. Fans of each team have despised each other for decades, and honestly, forget about winning the EPL, they have as much pride against one another on who finishes on top in the table! But at the end of the day, soccer is and should always be about unity. Putting all hatred aside and coming together for the beautiful game – at least off the pitch. soccer fashion brand Fokohaela is leading the way with this in mind through its immense talent in apparel design to unite the two rivals in a supreme way (pun very intended). Keep in mind Jason Lee, founder and designer of Fokhaela, is a die-hard Arsenal fan as well. I present to you the one and only “Spurs ’91 to Supreme ’18 to Arsenal ’19” jersey (long name) by Fokohaela.

Overall Design: Are you kidding me? This thing is ridiculously bad. And by bad I mean good, and by good I mean it’s supreme! Supreme probably thought they were being slick and edgy by taking direct inspiration from the ’91 Spurs kit, but Fokohaela took it to another level by using the design as an Arsenal kit. The red colorway sits perfectly with the traditional Arsenal home kit and it’s fresh to see some of the subtle jabs at Supreme by honoring Barbara Kruger and more blunt typeface logos which reads “it’s our pleasure to disgust you” in the famous “Supreme font.” My favorite part of the overall design is that at a first glance you would think that this might be a Supreme x Arsenal jersey breathing more hype to the hypebeasts, but when you look closer to the details, one can interpret it as a smack to the face to those that ride waves to only follow trends…

Score: 5/5

Functionality: This jersey seems to be a cut and sew piece by taking the actual Supreme jersey that was released in ’18 and cutting off its sleeves to sew white polyester long sleeves with red cuffs. My reasonable and educated guess tells me that this piece wasn’t really made to function on the pitch, but rather it was made to perhaps stunt off the pitch as well as send a message to those that care to pay attention to the details. So, in conclusion, would I wear it on the pitch? Probably not, but I don’t think that was its intended purpose!

Score: 4/5

Uniqueness: Fokohaela is probably one of the top soccer brands out there known for its uniqueness and this one is no different. I invite you to take a look at its other releases in the past and every one of their jerseys will kill this criteria through the roof. What makes this jersey so unique? Well, it pretty much unites Spurs and Arsenal – a once unthinkable concept – in a strange way by using Supreme to shed some spotlight. I have not seen anything like this from any other brand with a cut and sew approach while integrating it so well with the aesthetics of the overall theme, both in colorway and details.

Score: 5/5

Details: Details in this kit is what makes this jersey come to life and spew emotions to those looking at it. The first thing you will realize is the “Don’t Fly Emirates” sponsorship logo on the front of the shirt. That typeface already tells you that this isn’t just a shirt to look dope in the eyes of a hypebeast, but it’s trying to send a message. Then you look at the left sleeve with the wordmark of “It’s our pleasure to disgust you” which is derived from one of many Kruger’s famous works. A very strong and aggressive message. Then in the back of the shirt you see a middle finger in the #9 vinyl press and right below it is “Kruger” in her original font that was famously used by Supreme. But Fokohaela is not stopping here. Pop the collar and a simple “fuck off” is written, and if you read the whole back of the shirt with said collar popped, you would read “fuck off supreme” from up-down. I’m not sure if that was the intended purpose, but once you really pay attention to the details, this 1 of 1 shirt seems to be made to honor Barbara Kruger and not Supreme as the initial impression might suggest. Crazy.

Score: 5/5

Unfortunately this piece is not for sale to the public as it is a 1 of 1 release. Feel free to check out the rest of Fokohaela’s collection from their website.