The National Women’s Soccer League kicks off this weekend, with 11 other teams across the United States looking to dethrone reigning champions Portland Thorns.
Like Major League Soccer, teams in the NWSL usually unveil one kit per season and keep them for two seasons each. Here’s a look at the new kits unveiled for 2023:
ANGEL CITY FC — Away
Now in their second year in the NWSL, Los Angeles-based Angel City FC has unveiled a new white “Represent” away kit with a grey halftone map of L.A. covering the front and sleeves. “That’s a symbolic choice in addition to an aesthetic one: to the designers, each fleck of color represents an individual story in the mosaic that is the city of LA,” the club says on its website. It also features a “Sol Rosa” pink crew neck collar and side stripes.
A unique twist for fans who buy the new away kit is that they can choose from one of 12 badges to apply to the left sleeve. Each badge represents one of the cultures, neighborhoods or identities that make up Los Angeles. The diamond-shaped badge is exclusively for season ticket holders. You can read more about the patches and their creators here.
CHICAGO RED STARS — Home
The Chicago Red Stars’ new “Foundation” home kit is predominantly black, with a tonal pattern of interconnected six-pointed stars inspired by Chicago’s city flag. Four of the stars that run across the chest, under the crest, are highlighted in red, with the logo of sponsor CIBC underneath. The sleeves and crew neck collar are solid black.
HOUSTON DASH — Home
The Houston Dash are reaching for the stars in their new “La Estrella” home kit. It’s primarily orange, with a tonal “digital pattern mimicking the limitless energy, speed, and intensity of a star,” according to the club’s website.
KANSAS CITY CURRENT — Away
The Kansas City Current’s new away kit, dubbed the “Ice Kit,” is a “clean white top with embossed designs, representing the rushing momentum and power of the Current, carving a new path driven by energy and optimism,” according to the club’s website. Names and numbers on the back are printed in “storm blue.” The white shirt is paired with teal shorts and socks.
NY/NJ GOTHAM FC — Home
After sporting a patina green sash on a black kit at home in recent years, NY/NJ Gotham FC put a spin on that motif for their 2023 home kit. On top of the black base are jagged patina green stripes that fade to black. The raglan sleeves and back are solid black.
NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE — Away
The North Carolina Courage have gone back to basics with their new away kit for 2023. The kit is all white, including the sleeve cuffs and collar. It features an iridescent chrome crest on the left chest. Both this kit and the Courage’s home kit bear the logo of new main sponsor Merz Aesthetics.
OL REIGN — Home
Seattle-based OL Reign’s new “Purpose” home kit is “designed to capture the sense of place and environment that defines” the club, according to their website. The blue shirt has section containing different tonal patterns of diagonal and swirling lines. Red stripes run down the sides, and the sleeve cuffs and an insert at the front of the collar are also red.
ORLANDO PRIDE — Home
The Orlando Pride are honoring legendary Black artist Mary Ann Carroll with their new “Highway Woman” home kits. Carroll is one of Florida’s most famous painters and was the only woman in the iconic Highwaymen group of artists. The kit is predominantly purple, with a tonal brushstroke pattern across the front that’s a nod to Carroll’s artistry.
PORTLAND THORNS — Away
Certainly one of the most talked-about NWSL kits this year is the Portland Thorns’ new away kit. The off-white base is covered in tattoo-style artwork, including a dagger through the club crest, which is centered on the chest, and roses on the shoulders. “This jersey speaks to both the artistry that our players exhibit on the pitch and the creativity of our incredible fans,” the Thorns’ website reads. “Bold, unique, undeniably Portland.”
Two black stars in the handle of the dagger and a red one above symbolize the club’s three NWSL championships. Above the dagger is the Roman numeral MMXIII, a reference to the Thorns’ first NWSL season in 2013. The inner parts of a banner across the chest read “ROSE CITY TILL I DIE,” while the outer parts read “BY ANY OTHER NAME.” The sleeve cuffs and an insert at the back collar are dark green.
RACING LOUISVILLE — Home
Racing Louisville draws on its home city’s rich horse racing heritage for its new home kit. The tonal houndstooth pattern is a tribute to Penny Chenery, “The First Lady of Racing” and the owner of 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat. Chenery often wore houndstooth-patterned jackets as she continued to excel and blaze trails in what was a male-dominated sport at the time.
SAN DIEGO WAVE FC — Home and Away
San Diego Wave FC’s new home kit for 2022 is predominantly navy blue, with royal blue inserts at both the front and back of the collar. The jock tag features a Wave logo based on “San Diego’s iconic signage located throughout the different neighborhoods of the city.” The away kit, meanwhile, is all white with another custom jock tag logo.
Both kits will feature a custom-designed set of numbers with a wave pattern covering the bottom half.
WASHINGTON SPIRIT — Home
We covered the Washington Spirit here at SportsLogos.net earlier this month when they announced a new black-and-white color scheme to replace the red, white and blue they’d used since their inception. That announcement came with new black home kits for 2023, which feature a raised iridescent chrome crest on the left chest. Majority owner Michelle Kang told guests at the unveiling that the new color scheme may just be the beginning of an extensive rebrand of the Spirit where “everything is on the table,” including the colors and the name.