SCOUTING REPORT: LET’S TALK BARCELONA & PSG

Aren’t we tired of talking about Real Madrid and the Champions League finals? Finally, Liverpool gets some of the UCL spotlight that has been dominated by Los Blancos for the past three seasons. Being a Barcelona fan myself, this weekend’s final is not something I am looking forward to. Of course I want Liverpool to snatch it from Madrid, but considering my bad luck in sports this year, I have a feeling the boys in white are going to win it again and I’m going to avoid all soccer forums until the World Cup – I don’t like facing the truth. And being a bitter Barcelona fan, I want to steal the big spotlight from these two teams, especially Madrid, at least for the length of this article. For this week’s Scouting Report, I’ll be covering Nivelcrack’s most recent release of their half-zip pullovers inspired by the colors of Barcelona and PSG.

Overall Design: The design of the two pieces are simple and clean. No graphics are integrated, but the main colors of each club were used to show the inspiration behind each piece. The colors of FC Barcelona are blue and red, which is also why they are known as the Blaugrana meaning blue and deep red in Catalan. The colors of PSG are blue, red, and white, hence the name of the piece is “Tricolor” after the three signature colors of the Parisian club. This is a contrast from the rest of Nivelcrack’s SS18 collection as most pieces from that collection were graphic-heavy. The structure of the pullover featuring the half-zip up to the neck is also a great look in my opinion, where it definitely has its roots in soccer.

Score: 4/5

Functionality: These pullovers are made from 100% polyester and yes you certainly can play on the pitch with these, and I actually recommend it as I’ve done so myself! The quality on these is up there with other tracksuits and tops from other major sporting apparel companies. The reason why tracksuits and athletic tops like these became a fashion trend was not just for its looks, but also how comfortable and practical they were for daily wear. When I first laid my hands on them, they felt rich and thick, but also light enough to not drag you down when you wear them.

Score: 5/5

Uniqueness: When you think of this criteria, you’re looking for something that is different from what’s out there right now in the market. Being a Barcelona fan and maybe from a biased perspective, I had a very positive first impression when I first saw the “Blaugrana” pullover. Not because anything in the design was out of this world, nor because it was something I haven’t seen before, but because it perfectly captured how I would want to represent my club without having to boast about the actual crest of the football club. It had just enough of the Barcelona DNA (shout-out Xavi) for me to want to wear it.

Score: 4/5

Details: The details of both pullovers are in their colors, but not much else. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing as the point of this release was to have the colors be the focus of the overall design, and I think Nivelcrack played their cards right with this one. This is the only way for us to talk about Barcelona and PSG during this time of the month, and I want to thank these two pieces for giving me an opportunity to snatch some of the spotlight from the Madridistas of what would soon be a terrible weekend for me.

Score: 3/5

You can now purchase the Blaugrana and Tricolore Half-zip Pullovers from RBC for US customers or Nivelcrack.

SCOUTING REPORT: ZLATAN THE TAEKWONDO MASTER

We’re all used to it by now. We’ve seen it a countless number of times from the Swedish giant Zlatan Ibrahimovic dominating the soccer pitch week in, week out. What makes him so great is not solely because of the number of goals he’s scored, nor because he’s won league titles in every league he has played in with the exception of the EPL. He is recognized as a one of a kind because of the manner in which he has done everything from day one of his career. He is probably one of the few players – minus Messi, Ronaldo, and Neymar – to have so many goals that are just jaw-dropping. He’s done it so many times that you expect nothing less from him, but still, when they happen again, it never ceases to amaze you. With all that said, did you know that behind his worldly talent in soccer, Zlatan earned a black-belt in taekwondo as a 17-year-old in his hometown of Malmö? And to further his credibility, he’s even received an honorary black-belt from the Italian national taekwondo team in 2010. Putting the two pieces together, I think it’s safe to assume that his outrageous acrobatic goals can be credited to his background in the ancient Korean martial art.

This week’s Scouting Report will cover the latest “Taekwondo FC” tee collection by Nivelcrack, one of our favorite soccer streetwear brands from Korea, recognizing the taekwondo-soccer master himself: Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Overall Design: This isn’t the first time Nivelcrack has released a “Taekwondo FC” tee. Their first release was based on the time when Diego Maradona faced Korea at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, and the Koreans used their taekwondo skills to stop him from his domination. This new collection takes the same approach and illustrates Zlatan doing a jumping taekwondo kick on the soccer field during his time at Manchester. The collection comes in two colorways of blue and red. The meat of the design is on the back of the shirt, while the front of the shirt simply reads “Taekwondo Futbol Club.” Overall I think the design is cool and the colorways are dope.

Score: 4/5


Functionality: I own these myself and can safely say that they’re of great quality. You don’t have to worry about them fading away like some of the 100% cotton tees out there.

Score: 4/5

Wearability: It was a perfect time for Nivelcrack to release this collection as for the past couple weeks Zlatan has been grabbing all headlines in soccer through his move to the MLS with LA Galaxy. His debut goals to snatch a comeback win in their first ever LA derby against LAFC brought more spotlight his way, and he’s also been making some appearances on very popular shows like Jimmy Kimmel Live. Summer is upon us here in LA, and it’s only going to get hotter. It’s perfect to match the heat with this refreshing design of a T-shirt. The pieces will definitely turn heads if you wear it to an LA Galaxy home match or anywhere in LA where Zlatan has been the focus of the city for that matter!

Score: 4/5


Details: Without the number of details on the design, it would be difficult to tell which player the T-shirt is recognizing as the main drawing can easily be seen as just an outline of a person. However, Nivelcrack has done a good job of maintaining some key features of Zlatan so that any true fan will be able to immediately point out that it’s the lion himself.

Score: 4/5

Technology and Innovation: Not much innovation here in terms of design as it is a traced sketch of an actual photo, and also the fact that its a continuous release of the “Taekwondo FC” tee collection, but the overall concept of these are great and fresh.

Score: 3/5

You can now purchase the Taekwondo FC tee collection by Nivelcrack from RBC.