Matchprepared Marius Iosipoi 22.09.22 LAT 🇱🇻 : MDA 🇲🇩 1-2
Moldova might be the most neglected place in Europe. While it’s certainly the less visited country of the continent, it seems that many people are unaware of its mere existence.
The people that do know about it, mostly picture it as a Borat-esque eyesore with horse-drawn carriages used as the main means of transportation. Hell, even Google’s image search primarily yields pictures of hideous Soviet-style prefab buildings when googling “Moldova” or “Chișinău”, the country’s capital.
In 2019, while visiting the country, I had an utterly different experience:
Moldova boasts with natural and cultural beauty and even Chișinău turned out to be well-maintained, clean and pretty city, offering great food and diversified activities.
Despite having a now renowned club team in the Champions League (well, technically it’s located in "neighboring" Transnistria), the Moldovan national team hasn’t been able to compete with the big teams, yet. This might be due to Sheriff Tiraspol - unlike the national team, of course - depending almost exclusively on Brazilian and African players, rather than fielding local talents. Within the UEFA, Moldova has always been one of the weaker sides, only being “surpassed” by the likes of Liechtenstein, Andorra and, of course, San Marino.
The team played their most successful Nations League campaign this year, when they almost managed to get promoted to League C, being leveled on points with Latvia, but losing out on goal difference.
German manufacturer JAKO often gets a lot of heat for their boring and borderline cheap-looking designs. While they managed to produce a couple decent designs for their “pro-clubs” like Bayer Leverkusen, their mostly templated-based national team shirts are among the worst ones in international football. (North) Macedonia and Moldova, however, have always been exceptions to that rule. Already doing a fantastic job on Moldova’s last shirt, JAKO might have just designed their best jersey to date.
Kept in just the perfect shade of yellow, the shirt features a fancy looking ornament embossed all over the shirt, which is picked up again on the cuffs. Next to the federation badge, the jersey also has the country’s coat of arms, depicting an eagle holding a shield with an auroch.
Speaking for the quality of JAKO’s products, the manufacturer logo has come-off – a common flaw with the company’s shirt…
The jersey was prepared for Marius Iosipoi when the team beat Latvia in the UEFA Nations League. The name and numbers are kept in a very dark blue, creating a nice contrast to the classy yellow. With not too many great shirts being released in 2022, this might be a strong contender for this year’s “shirt of the year”.