A new soccer uniform isn’t huge news beyond the sports press but this one definitely got our attention: Belgium’s national soccer team debuted its road uniforms for this summer’s European Championship tournament and the colours were directly inspired by the country’s most famous comics export: Hergé’s Tintin.

Source: Tintin.com

As the Brussels Times reports:

“[The] kit pays tribute to the Belgian cartoonist Hergé and the cartoon character for which he is best known: Tintin. Matching the clothing in which the character was most frequently seen, the kit has a blue shirt with a characteristic white collar, brown shorts and white socks.”

The unveiling itself took place at the Hergé Museum in Louvain-la-Neuve last Thursday – with much fanfare and some other Tintin guest stars…

Unveiling of the new kit at the Hergé Museum — Source: Tintin.com

Alongside a new iteration of the signature red uniforms for home games, the new ‘Tintin uniform’ will be worn by both the Belgian men’s team – Red Devils – and women’s team – Red Flames.  Its first game appearance will be at a friendly exhibition match between the Belgian men’s team against England on March 26. The UEFA European Championship tournament will take place June 14 to July 14 in Munich, Germany.

Royal Belgian Football Association CEO Piet Vandendriessche said,

“As a big Tintin fan, I am delighted that our Red Devils will be conquering Europe in a jersey based on one of Belgium’s greatest heroes. We are thrilled to pay homage to a true global icon: Hergé. He not only captured my heart and my mind growing up, but that of so many generations. And that is exactly what the Red Devils, but also the Red Flames, are trying to achieve. Hopefully Tintin will give them the inspiration to put up great performances, starting this summer in Germany.”

Source: Tintin.com

The ‘Tintin uniform’ is the third in recent history to be inspired by something Belgian  known worldwide – but it is the first to be directly referencing a Belgian comics character. Previously the 2016 UEFA Euro uniform invoked Belgium’s sports cycling heritage and the 2022 FIFA World Cup uniform referenced the famous fireworks of the Tomorrowland music festival.

The Adventures of Tintin, the comics series about a plucky young globe-trotting reporter, alongside his faithful dog and colourful cast, is beloved the world over and is still being picked up by readers of all ages in over 110 languages. Created by Hergé (real name Georges Remi), the character debuted in January 1929 as part of Belgian newspaper Le Vingtième Siècle’s weekly kids supplement, Le Petit Vingtième. An instant hit from his debut, Hergé’s ligne claire (clear line) art style would also go on to inspire countless generations of cartoonists.