New Air Jordan partnership
When you think of Air Jordan, the first thing that comes to mind, no matter who you are, is basketball. The brand embodies everything the court is about, with its lineage widely documenting and celebrating the career of icon Michael Jordan. So when it was announced back in 2018 that Jordan would be teaming up with a well-known sporting team, it would be a safe bet to assume that the organisation in question would be a member of the NBA; the Chicago Bulls? The Toronto Raptors? Nope, you aren’t even in the right ballpark, pardon the pun. In September 2018 Jordan decided to take the bold step of branching out across the pond, and across sporting fault lines into the world of what they would call “Soccer” but what all us Europeans know as Football. The team in question, Paris Saint-Germain, the biggest club in France, and one of the wealthiest clubs in the world, has an already well-established relationship with their long-term kit manufacturers Nike, but this new innovative deal with Air Jordan will break new ground for the pair.
PSG x Jordan
In a statement about the partnership back in September 2018 Nasser Al-Khelaifi, Chairman & CEO at Paris Saint-Germain said: “The collaboration between Paris Saint-Germain and Jordan underlines the ambition of both brands to combine performance, innovation and style. It is a logical next step in our project to make Paris Saint-Germain one of the biggest global sports brands, capitalising on the avant-garde approach of our Parisian roots. This partnership builds on our long-term association with Nike and will enable us to reach new audiences as well as offering our loyal fans around the world the most stylish club merchandise.”
Michael Jordan added: “Jordan Brand and Paris Saint-Germain share a distinct position in sport and style, so to partner with the club is a natural fit. We’re excited to unite these two passionate communities by putting the Jumpman on the chest of Paris Saint-Germain to continue fuelling the energy for sport and style globally.”
Discovering the collection, Neymar Jr. declared: “For me, the Jordan Brand means phenomenal, magic, irreverent. It is perfect for Paris and for the Champions League. It is a huge responsibility to carry Jordan’s name on a shirt, and we look forward to an excellent season. Two partners that are champions, both Paris and Jordan, so I really hope this connection brings us many titles.”
It’s clear from the comments from both sides of the deal, this very much seems like a win-win for everyone involved. PSG get something none of their competitors has ever achieved, in being the first football club to get Jordan on their kit, and as Neymar Jr. so eloquently puts it, the Jordan Brand weight is significant across all sport, as being synonymous with the very best athletes and sporting icons. So for the PSG players, like Neymar Jr. and Kylian Mbappe this could very much see them being put in a similar category, and who would complain about that? In return, of course, Air Jordan can grow their global reach even more so, and only further their goals in developing a brand could one day surpass even their parent company, Nike.
PSG x Air Jordan 6
Jordan celebrates stars, and PSG has a lot of them; flashy, accessible, and stylish on and off the pitch. So much so that Neymar Jr. has become one of the faces of Jordan’s new Patta collaborated lookbook, and to go with the lucrative kit deal which will debut for the 2019/2020 season, Jordan is releasing a PSG inspired colourway for the Air Jordan 6. Dressed in dark greys and blacks, the shoe looks to be constructed from suede panels. Hits of bold “Infrared” then comes in on the Jumpman logo, lace lock and “PANAME” heel tag. Additionally, “Paris” and “75” branding has been spotlighted on the lace locks, while a PSG badge with Jumpman logo in the centre has been highlighted on the back heels.
PSG x Air Jordan 1
This isn’t the first Jordan silhouette to be rolled out with a PSG inspired look, their classic Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG silhouette got a similar treatment dressed in a full black nubuck and leather upper and white midsole. The Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG Paris Saint-Germain is then accented with a striped red, white and black tongue label which is then also placed on the midsole. Finally, ‘PSG’s team badge and “ici ‘c’est Paris” motif can be found on the back of the tongue tab and on the insole.
For my money, this collaboration between Jordan and PSG isn’t lighting the world on fire in terms of it’s aesthetic, but you can’t argue that for two heavyweights to combine in such a way, it is definitely something to take note of, and it really does pose the question, how far can Jordan push the ceiling? And can they really surpass even Nike?