In an interesting move which has set tongues wagging on social media, Irish football club Bohemians FC have revealed their new away jersey for the 2019 season, featuring the face of Jamaican reggae legend Bob Marley.
“We are delighted to reveal our 2019 away jersey. Designed by #Bohs in conjunction with our new kit suppliers O’Neills, it gives a nod to Dalymount’s special place in the hearts of football and music fans,” the club tweeted.
Marley’s face features on the bottom right of the kit and the Rastafarian colours; red, yellow and green are on the left-hand side of the jersey.
Tuff Gong has been honoured in many ways across the way but the latest tribute by the Irish football club has raised much interest. Marley was an avid football fan, and he played soccer with his band members during his lifetime. However, the tribute is not related to Bob’s love for the beautiful game but rather it’s in recognition of the time Marley performed at the club’s home stadium, Dalymount Park, in 1980.
The Home of Irish Football was graced in the 1970s by Thin Lizzy and the Boomtown Rats, in the 1980s by Bob Marley, the club said.
“This jersey, designed by Bohemian FC in conjunction with our new kit supplier O’Neills, gives a nod to that history – and to the stadium’s special place in the hearts of both football and music fans”.
“Dalymount Park has played a unique part – chiefly in the sporting – but also in the musical and cultural history of Ireland,” the club said.
The tribute has been endorsed by many of Marley’s fans across the world, and the son of the reggae legend Ky-Mani Marley reportedly told has told BBC News NI: “This is the dopest shirt I’ve ever seen”.
Honouring African icons: Should we take a leaf?
The move by the Bohemians FC prompts the question, could we imagine or expect to see an image of an African political, musical or cultural icon emblazoned on the shirt of ASEC Mimosas, Al Ahly, TP Mazembe, Asante Kotoko, Orlando Pirates, Dynamos or Enyimba? Could it be loved?
To pay tribute to our Black or African icons, could we picture a kit with the image of Kwame Nkrumah, Nelson Mandela, Malcolm X, Thomas Sankara, Harriet Tubman, Winnie Mandela, or Wangari Maathai among others?
There are many ways to remember, and honour our Black or African icons, and perhaps taking a leaf from the Bohemians FC wouldn’t be such a bad idea.