The index of the Dutch soccer shirt

The shirt history of the dutch team - the 'Oranjehemden'.
Separated into the four elements of the shirt: stripes, numbers, colours and emblem (lions).


stripe index oranje

1. Shirt; Dutch flag, stripes in red, white and blue, placed diagonal on the front of the shirt. 1st. official international game against Belgium, 1905. (photo)
2. Shirt; Adidas, stitched ribbon, World Cup '74.
3. Shirt; Johan Cruijff, stitched ribbon, World Cup '74.*
4. Shirt; Adidas, stitched ribbon, World Cup '78.
5. Shirt; Adidas, set-in ribbon, qualification match Euro '84.
6. Shirt; Lotto, tricot-board, World Cup '94.
7. Shirt; Nike, tricot-board, qualification match World Cup '98.
8. Shirt; Nike, tricot-board, World Cup '98.

(All stripes are based on the Dutch National jersey as presented in the 'Oranje Voetbalmuseum', Muntplein 6, Amsterdam.)

The first Dutch international team played in 3 different striped shirt versions. (photo) There was not yet a national shirt so the players wore their hometown shirts. The first national Dutch team shirt had red, white and blue vertical stripes. From about 1908 the stripes gave way to a plain orange shirt. Stripes are now only used as decorative elements or in form of the trademark of Adidas.

*For the World Cup of 1974 the Dutch national team were equipped with an Adidas sponsored outfit. The Dutch played with the three stripes on the sleeves, except for Johan Cruijff. Cruijff, who had a personal sponsor deal with Puma, felt not called to play with the three stripes of Adidas. He decided to wear a special manufactured two stripe version. Two of his team members, the Kerkhof brothers (who had also had a personal deal with Puma) followed his example. The shirt which was produced by Adidas / Erima and worn at the World Cup 74 and 78. (photo)


stripe index oranje

Shirt number 12, black with white edges, flock print. Ruud Krol, defender, World Cup ‘74.
Shirt number 14, orange with white edges, velours, stitched. Johan Cruijff, midfielder, qualification World Cup ‘78.
Shirt number 9, white, velours, stitched. Marco van Basten, striker, qualification Europa Cup ‘88.
Shirt number 3, white, left out in print. Frank Rijkaard, defender, WK ‘94.
Shirt number 3, (left one) white, left out in print. Danny Blind, sweeper, EK ‘96.
Shirt number 8, blue with white edges, foil print. Dennis Bergkamp, striker, Qualification World Cup ‘98.
Shirt number 16, black with silver edges, foil print, Edgar Davids. midfielder, World Cup ‘98.
Shirt number 5, black, foil print. Boudewijn Zenden, left wing, World Cup ‘02.
Shirt number 4, black, foil print. Frank de Boer, central defender, Qualification World Cup ‘02.
Shirt number 4, (bottom one) black, foil print. Shirt, with signatures, World Cup ‘02.

Shirt numbers are introduced just before the second half of the 20th Century to make players distinguishable from each other. The numbers were originally associated to specific positions. The design of the letters became a point of interest for brands since the seventies. The sport kit manufacturers now develop their own typefaces as part of their marketing tools and to increase their recognizability.

"The figure 3 is a tribute to the impact-full kick. By hitting the ball in a particular manner, the ball can be curled with a special effect. Another manner to exploit the quality of leather balls is the so called 'stift'. These kicks have a breathtaking beauty, as well as the curve with which a free kick can be planted in the junction of the goal. The 3 can be seen as a statue existing from two perfect curls rolling up".
Sander Neijnens, typograph,


stripe index oranje

1. International match Netherlands – Bulgaria, 1960.
2. World Cup ‘74, Adidas.
3. World Cup ‘86, Adidas.
4. World Cup ‘94, Lotto.
5. World Cup ‘98, Nike.
6. Qualification World Cup ‘02, Nike.

From the year 1907 orange is the main colour of the Dutch national jersey. Orange refers to the Dutch Royal Family also called 'the House of Orange'. Since the colour was introduced it is the main point of identification for the shirt.

"On the photos in the KNVB archive it seems that from around 1908 until now the shirt almost stayed the same orange shirt."
Nicole Brandt, employee of the National KNVB archive.

"The exact colour oranje is not fixed as can be seen in the last shirt collections. Bright / less bright. The taste of the coach also plays a role in the choice of the colour (coach Hiddink didn't liked black trousers, Rijkaard however does)."
Chris Bakker, sport marketing manager football, Nike.


stripe index oranje

1. Gold, embroidery on a pale blue satin badge, adjustable with 12 buttons. International match Netherlands - Belgium 1955* (photo)
2. Yellow, rubber adjusted on pale blue felted badge, sewed on with loose stitches. International match Netherlands - Belgium 1960 (photo)
3. Black, flockprint. Qualification game World Cup '74.
4. Orange, flockprint. Qualification game, World Cup '78.
5. White, flock print. Qualification game World Cup '94.
6. Orange, embroidery, Euro '04.**

Introduced in 1907 the lion is one of the main elements on the Dutch national jersey. The first lions that were used are closely based on the emblem of the Dutch Royal Family. In time the clear setup of the lion slowly becomes more sketchy like and loosely interpreted by the specific kit sponsor or employees of the Dutch Football Association (KNVB).

*"In azure, decorated with cubes of gold, a lion of gold, crowned with a crown of three and two pearl points of the same, with a tongue and nails, in the right front claw holding in upwards in left position a sword of silver bound with points of gold, the arrows together with a ribbon of gold." Royal Decree, fixed for the last time in 1980, no. 3. Article 1. The coat of arms of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, description lion.

**In 1997 the Dutch Football Association (KNVB) changed their house-style. The lion that was used on the shirt as a reference to the KNVB and the Royal Family changed into a real KNVB trademark.