Barcelona ditch stripes for new checkerboard kit

Barcelona have revealed a striking new home shirt for the 2019-20 season, with the LaLiga champions dropping their traditional red-and-blue stripes.

For the first time in their 119-year history, Barca's famous Blaugrana jersey will instead feature a checkerboard design reminiscent of Croatia's.

The club said in a statement the new kit is inspired by the city "by incorporating the characteristic blocks of its Eixample district, home to some of the most emblematic buildings designed by the great architect Antoni Gaudi".

The kit also sees the incorporation of the Catalan flag moved from the back of the shirt to the 'V' of the neck.

Gerard Pique accepts the change in style may not be universally popular.

"The kit is something new and exciting," he told the Barca website.

"It might be different, but it is 100 per cent Barca and it is even better that the design represents the bond the club has with the supporters and the people who are driving the city forward."

The shirt has drawn comparisons with the Croatia national team jersey, prompting a response from the Croatian Football Federation on Twitter, who said: "Nice try Barcelona, but you can't beat red-and-white checkers".

Barca's decision to move away from stripes comes after Serie A champions Juventus also revealed a controversial new shirt design for the 2019-20 season.

Juve's black and white stripes are no more, with the home kit instead featuring black and white halves divided by a stripe in pink.

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