Retro Sunderland Football Shirts

Sunderland header

Want to buy some retro Sunderland football shirts? read on…


Team: Sunderland Association Football Club
Nickname: The Black Cats
Team Colours: Red and White Stripes
Year Founded: 1879
Stadium: Stadium of Light
Location: Sunderland, England


If you want to relive the days of Montgomery, Clough, Quinn, Phillips or Rowell and look at retro Sunderland football shirts there are plenty of options available to you:


Sunderland seemed to me to be not such much a sleeping giant as I was growing up, but more like a very big lad taking a nap. One of the best games I have ever seen was the 1998 Play-Off Final where they lost on penalties to Charlton after drawing the game 4-4, but after that, for a few seasons they gave their supporters something to shout about winning the Championship and having a couple of decent seasons in the Premier League. Steve

Favourite player: Kevin Phillips – had two or three really amazing seasons around the turn of the Millenium.

Favourite kit: The 1978 home shirt – simple and classic retro design, typical 70s. Available from Kitbag (see below for link)

Two men wearing retro football inspired t shirts with text in between them

Buy From: Classic Football Shirts

Retro Sunderland Football Shirts 1983 home
Sunderland Home Shirt 1988

About Classic Football Shirts

Classic Football Shirts set themselves apart from many other companies by the fact that their shirts are all original shirts from the dates listed, not reproductions trying to replicate a classic shirt. All shirts come with condition details – ie whether they are in Mint Condition, As New, etc, etc. The prices are slightly higher but you are really getting a piece of history.

1983 Home Shirt

They have over numerous classic Sunderland shirts from the 80s to the present day including the 1983-86 home shirt (above left).

This period saw Sunderland reach their first and only League Cup Final in 1985, where they lost to Norwich 1-0. Unusually both Norwich and Sunderland were relegated from the First Division at the end of the season. Norwich finished 20th on 49 points, Sunderland 21st on 40 points and then Stoke City were rock bottom on 17 points and with a minus 67 goals difference!

Sunderland didn’t fare much better in the 1985-86 season despite their relegation, finishing 18th in Division One, narrowly avoiding a second successive relegation.

1988 Home Shirt

You can also get a 1988-91 home shirt (above right), worn the season after the lowest point in Sunderland’s history – their first season in the third tier of English football.

They were immediately promoted back to the Second Division for the 1988-89 season, where they finished 11th. The following season they finished 6th which qualified them for the play-offs.

Sunderland beat their rivals Newcastle in an epic semi-final – drawing 0-0 at Roker Park and then travelling to St James Park where they won 2-0. They then actually lost to Swindon in the Play-Off Final, but were promoted in place of Swindon after the Wiltshire club were convicted of financial irregularities.

>>> View the Classic Football Shirts selection of retro Sunderland shirts for sale <<<

Click on my link above and add something to your basket. Hover over the footballs hanging in the top right corner and click on ‘Basket’ from the subsequent menu that pops up.
Enter CFSPJ10 in the ‘Discount Codes’ box and receive 10% off of your order!

Buy From: Vintage Football Shirts

Retro Sunderland Football Shirts 1996 away
Sunderland Home Shirt 1991

About Vintage Football Shirts

Vintage Football Shirts also offer original shirts rather than reproductions with each shirt marked for its condition – from BNIB (brand new in bag) to Excellent (may have tiny defect, may not be noticeable).

1991 Home Shirt

With around 50 Sunderland shirts ranging from the 90s to the present day – you are sure to find something you like such as the classic 1991-94 home shirt (above right) worn when Sunderland made the FA Cup Final when they were in the Second Division in 1992.

Despite finishing 18th in the second flight that season they made a good fist of the Cup Final, against Liverpool, eventually going down 2-0. Their squad was notable for being the last that featured only British Isles-born players in the FA Cup Final.

The following season, 1992-93 they finished 21st in the Second Division – just a point above relegation and then finished 12th in 1993-94.

1996 Away Shirt

You can also get the unusual plain white 1996-97 away shirt (above left), emblazoned with sponsor Scorpion Lager’s name across the front.

This retro football shirt was worn during Sunderland’s final season at Roker Park. It wasn’t to be a fitting finale as the club was relegated from the Premier League. In a tight end to the season, seven teams all finished within three points of each other and Sunderland (along with their rivals Middlesbrough) were relegated on the final day of the season.

An indication of where the Black Cats problems fell can be shown by the fact their top goalscorers, Paul Stewart and Craig Russell, finished with just four goals each.

>>> View the Vintage Football Shirts selection of retro Sunderland shirts for sale <<<


Sunderland complete one of their best seasons ever – winning promotion to the Premier League in 1999 with 31 wins from 46 games, 3 defeats, 91 goals and 105 points!

Buy from: Amazon

2000 Home Shirt

Amazon has a great selection of retro Sunderland shirts including my favourite, the 2000 home shirt (above). This was worn as confidence was at a high around the club after winning promotion to the Premier League with a record 105 points in the 1998-99 season.

Their comeback season was a great success, finishing seventh in the Premier League thanks largely to the goals of Kevin Phillips – he scored 30 league goals and won the European Golden Shoe, at the time of writing the only Englishman to have the award. In fact Sunderland missed out on European football on goal difference only.

Phillips was Sunderland’s top scorer for six successive seasons, but only became a forward by accident. Playing for non-league Baldock Town he was a right-back, until an injury crisis saw him used as a striker. He scored twice and never looked back, joining Watford in 1994 when he was 21 and scoring 24 goals in 50 games that earned him a move to Sunderland.

>>> View the selection of retro Sunderland shirts for sale on Amazon <<<

Buy From: Kitbag

Retro Sunderland Football Shirts 1978 home

1978 Home Shirt

Kitbag has a small number of great retro Sunderland shirts, the pick of which is the 1978 home shirt (above).

This lovely retro football shirt saw the Black Cats miss out on promotion back to the top flight on goal difference, having a goal difference one worse than third place Stoke City. They made up for this disappointment the following season when they finished second.

Prolific during this period was Gary Rowell who eventually scored 102 goals by the time he left in 1984 – which was a post-war club record at the time (it was later surpassed by Kevin Phillips).

>>> View the Kitbag selection of retro Sunderland shirts for sale <<<

Buy from: TOFFS

Retro Sunderland Football Shirts 1937 Cup Final


TOFFS (which stands for The Old Fashioned Football Shirt) specialises in handcrafted, vintage football shirts made to the highest quality in the North of England – with each shirt as close to the real thing as possible.

1937 FA Cup Final Shirt

TOFFS has a small number of great vintage Sunderland shirts. In particular, I like the 1937 FA Cup Final shirt (above). Sunderland started the season as defending champions but eventually finished eighth.

They did however win the FA Cup Final – beating Preston North End 3-1. Bobby Gurney scored the first goal and Gurney is the highest goalscorer ever for Sunderland with 205 league goals in 348 games.

The second goal was scored by Raich Carter, an England International who also played county cricket. The Cup Final was also the first ever to be played in May, prior to this they had been played in April.

>>> View the TOFFS selection of retro Sunderland shirts for sale <<<

So there you have it. If, like me, you are a lover of football and all things retro there are a huge selection of classic Sunderland shirts you can pick up to revel in the nostalgia of days gone by!

>>> See what other classic football shirts are available <<<




Spread the love

2 thoughts on “Retro Sunderland Football Shirts”

  1. Hi Steve, just politely pointing out an error on the Sunderland page – we didn’t lose 4-3 to Charlton in 1998. It was 4-4 and we lost on penalties.


    • Thanks Matt, poor error on my part as I vividly remember the day. It was gloriously sunny and literally right at the very end of my first year at Uni. I watched the game in the Fox and Duck pub in Broomhill in Sheffield with a few friends before we all went home for the summer holidays and it was one of the best games I have ever seen. Correction made, thank you.


Leave a Comment