In the crush of festive advertising, you may have missed this powerful campaign from Nike, celebrating the 93 black men who have changed the face of English football. In the history of the men’s national team, only 93 out of 1,244 players have been black.
Nike launched a full-scale takeover of Wembley Stadium on the evening of England’s 1,000th match to honour those 93. The work, by Wonderhood Studios, included portraits of the men and perimeter boards displaying their names in the same minute as their order in the sequence of 93 players. The next day, an ad showed the first black player, Viv Anderson in 1978, passing the ball to the most recent, Tyrone Mings, who made his England debut earlier this year.
The campaign was particularly timely because the previous match between England and Montenegro, in March, was marred by racist abuse.
The match is long over, but the names of those 93 men should be remembered. Thank you, Nike and Wonderhood, for revealing another inequality and introducing us to some underappreciated heroes.
Agency Wonderhood Studios
Title "And all who follow"