New pitch, some early transfer activity, new sponsors, new kit manufacturers… There’s no denying that the Club have been busy over the summer. Is it correct to say that this is the end of an era? No more smiley LG face everywhere, no more discreet Nike tick on the shirts… The kit is now made by Kappa so we’ll have this logo to contend with;

I’ll be honest, I was worried when the new manufacturer was announced. I had visions of enormous logos all over the shop and bright, garish colours á la Portsmouth at their FA Cup Final. I’m not sure pink is Schwarzer’s colour anyway… The club, in their oh-so-mysterious way, have given a snippet, a morsel if you will, of the new kit on the website;

It’s not as bad as I’d imagined. The logos are the right way up and not all that large either. Plus, it’s all white. Yay! Of course we have yet to see the front or back but let’s face it, it’ll still have to go some way to beat the wondrous kit of the 2004 era.

So if we don’t have the LG winking smiley, which I had grown quite fond of, what whizzy logo will we have plastered everywhere? This;

Not all that whizzy really is it? The eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed it gracing already. Who are these people anyway? So I did a bit of digging (ie Googled it and went to their website). They’re a City-based outfit offering trading accounts so the likes of you or I can trade foreign exchange or tricky financial instruments. Boooooring. And I work in the financial industry. But more excitingly they have a section about their other sponsorships: Aston Villa FC, the new Virgin Racing Formula 1 team, and the World Rally Championships. Wow. That’s quite an impressive bit of sports sponsorship pedigree going on there. That can’t be a bad thing.

I don’t want to say it’s the end of an era, losing all these familiar sights, because that gives it a pessimistic tone and that’s not how I’m feeling about it. I think change is a good thing. It breathes new life in, and with it the smell of hope and opportunity. Change isn’t something to fear, as long as it’s managed well. We’ve experienced change before – that’s what football’s like. Wenger and Ferguson aside, how many managers stay with clubs for more than a few years? Likewise players, apart from a few such as Terry, Carragher and so on, it’s like musical chairs. Some people thrive on change and I’d like to think the club see it as just another challenge to be overcome, like the extra games last season or that blasted ash cloud.

I found this quote by a previous Secretary of the State of Conneticut, Pauline R Kezer; 

Continuity gives us roots; change gives us branches, letting us stretch and grow and reach new heights.

Beautiful isn’t it? Roll on the new season and everything that comes with it.