A real matchworn jersey or just a fanshop jersey?
Firstly the differentiation is not between an original jersey and a fraud but between a jersey from an obligatory game (a jersey of a professional football player) and a jersey that has been bought in the fanshop. In rare cases these have been the same. E.g. at the world cup in 2006 in which Addidas let them play with Climacool jerseys to be able to promote the jerseys further.
Moreover, the same jerseys have also been worn in the German Football league (Bundesliga). These have been worn in the German football league as well as they have been sold in the fanshop. A good example that can be named is the SV Werder Bremen in 1997/1998 with its sponsor O-Tel-o which jerseys have been produced by Puma.
How do I recognize the difference between a matchworn jersey and a fanshop jersey?
Sometimes the difference cannot be seen since the producers’ hand in brutes to the sales people from Addidas/Kappa/Puma and Nike or sometimes they are being sold by the clubs themselves. If on top of everything one has been putting patches on them then it is the same (1:1). Sometimes jerseys that are not being used are handed in to photographers, I own a new one from Diego which is prepared to play with and which has been given to a sponsor.
What are the leads that it is a real jersey that has been worn in the German football league (Bundesliga)? Well there are certain leads than can be looked out for. Since 1995 there has been a bigger number on the back, meaning that the number on the back must be bigger than 25 cm. No club has been played with a smaller number, only FC Bayern Munich as an exception. From 1997-1999 FC Bayern Munich has been playing with a number that has been only 20 cm big which nowadays is being put on jerseys for kids. I couldn’t believe it for a long time. No fan is able to see this from a distance of 200 meters.
Of course it has to have the according competition patch. From 1997 onwards the German football league was wearing a patch on the right shoulder which can be bought but if its not there it definitely isn’t a real one. Most of the time the emblem of the club of the matchworn jersey is a little different to the one in the fanshop. It is also possible that the logo of the producer is a little thinner rather than thicker. From 1992 until 1995 the addidas logo at Addidas has been different below the neck than the one in the fanshop.
If the emblem of the club is very different they are attached thin as well as the sponsors patches which are shown on the chest. However, this could be different in every club,
The most important fact is from whom it has been bought. If here by a specialist dealer or a respectable buyer who is somewhat close to the club, or on the other hand on a platform for auctions on which every jersey is supposedly matchworn which creates the feeling of 10.000 German 1990 jerseys have been sold while in reality only 90 exist.
On the more recent jerseys there are a few prominent characteristics. Nike has big holes on the side. Addidas shows the size often in numbers from 1 – 4 instead of XS until XXXL but also not always. The number on the back is exactly 25.5 Cm on most jerseys from 2008 onwards.
Whats a good advice as well is reading the specifications of each jersey of the German football league (Bundesliga) from the according playing time from which the matchworn jersey is supposedly from. In this case facts like design and size are shown, the correct name is called „guideline for sports clothes and the equipment“. This changes every 2-3 years.
Well, I couldn’t’ give an exact instruction, however I could explain a few things such as how to see a fraud quickly. The question in the end is always where the jersey is from, however we won’t give any information about our sources. Nevertheless, an auction online is a very very bad source.
Players of the German football league (Bundesliga) have to pay for their own tickets
You should not forget that the jerseys, which are been given out, cost the player some money as well. If Miroslav Klose is handing out a jersey he might have in his contract that he can give away 50 jerseys otherwise each jersey costs him 100€. Once I was standing next to the former player Denny Advic from Werder Bremen (he didn’t play much for them) when he wanted to have a jersey for his family. He didn’t have any money on him and in the end he had to pay the full price minus the 20% staff discount. That is the reason why they don’t give their jerseys to just anyone.
Recognizing matchworn jerseys before 1990?
This is relatively easy since these jerseys are very thick and the number on the back is not a flock coating. It is a mix out of plastic, which really is a lot thicker than a flock coating. Whoever has a jersey with a number like that is most likely holding an original matchworn jersey in its hands. You have to watch out however; according to Günther Netzer, everyone only had one jersey for the whole seasons until the end of the 80s. Like it is know today by the amateur clubs. Günther Netzer once said if I would have given out my jersey back then my manager would have taken 100 Deutsche Mark from me.
Is the seller handing out a certificate?
If the seller is handing you a certificate proving the realness of the jersey than it is definitely more positive than if he would not. You should always insist on getting a certificate even if it costs a little bit of money, he doesn’t have to give it to you for free.
Clothes to train in are usually matchworn but also not always
The clothes to train in can’t be changed that easily with other players from different clubs. That is the reason why at the end oft he season the players are more likely to hand them out since they get a new set every year. There is also a raffle in regional competitions of training clothes. Loyal members who sometimes are members in other clubs usually give these. This is e.g. 100% the case in Bremen.
From DFB I have certain jerseys from Schweinsteiger and Lahm from 2006 however only training clothes. The real jerseys however, the five or six, they only give to their families.