My first non-FIFA shirt and the first on this blog! I received my first three shirts today and in terms of just design, I think this is my favourite – it’s just a lovely looking shirt.
I’m led to believe this is Guadeloupe’s third shirt (the home and away are the same design but are predominantly green and white respectively) and it’s very nice indeed.
In terms of their story, Guadeloupe is a bit of a strange one. They’re not a FIFA member but are affiliated with CONCACAF so can compete in the Gold Cup and Caribbean Cup.
The main reason Guadeloupe haven’t been allowed into FIFA is that they’re an overseas territory of France. Being an overseas territory doesn’t seem to have stopped others (US Virgin Islands anyone?).
It’s also a shame as Guadeloupe, like Suriname, have missed out on some potential superstars turning out in their colours.
Thierry Henry ring a bell? He could have played for Guadeloupe alongside Nicholas Anelka, Lillian Thuram and William Gallas. Even without the big names, Guadeloupe are one of the stronger sides in the Caribbean.
In the 2010 Caribbean Cup, the Guadeloupeans got all the way to the final before losing to Jamaica in the final. They have also done well in recent Gold Cups beating the likes of Canada and Honduras.
Until France help their cause or Guadeloupe move further away politically from their ‘parent’, Les Gwada Boys might have to be content with CONCACAF tournaments.
But if FIFA acceptance does come, don’t be surprised to see Guadeloupe cause a few upsets along the way. And maybe then more people will own their awesome shirts!