Admiral made the Norwich kit for five seasons from 1976/77 to 1980/81.
It’s hard to imagine in today’s world of three new kits a season that there was just one version of the home kit and two versions of the away kit for that whole of that time.
I think the Admiral shirts are truly stunning. They remain my favourite ever style worn by the Canaries.
There were no sponsor logos on the front or back. No sleeve patches. No player names. A very plain styling of the numbers hand stitched to the back. The club badge were stitched to the front of the V-necked shirts. The admiral logo featured in yellow against the green shoulder trim of the home shirt.
Early versions of the shirt featured a white heat embossed Admiral logo. Later versions used a stitched logo. There were small differences between the club badge too. You can see these variations on the slider below.
During this period, the club honoured several players such as Martin Peters with testimonials. In these matches, the club badge was replaced with embroidered match details as shown below.
There were two main versions of the away shirt.
An all white shirt with green trim showing the admiral logo.
Then a white shirt with green sleeves paired with green shorts. Oddly, on this, there was a variant with a white admiral logo on black trim and then another variant with a white logo against green trim.
I have only ever seen the all white away shirt in photos. Hopefully, someone still has one tucked away safely somewhere.
The away kit was hardly ever used as clubs always played in their main colours unless there was a clash.
At the time, for Norwich, that only meant using the shirts away at places like Wolves or for pre-season friendlies at Cambridge United.
There were two different colours for the goal keeper’s shirt.
Most common, was an absolute classic all green, long sleeve shirt with the admiral logo and badge on the front but no trim on the shoulders.
I’ve also seen photos of a red shirt with admiral logos on the sleeve.
That’s a really stunning shirt and I hope that it has survived somewhere too.
The history of Admiral is very well documented in Andy Well’s excellent “Get Shirty” book.
Andy describes how Admiral negotiated agreements directly with the manager of each of the clubs they supplied.
There’s no reason to assume it would have been any different with Norwich so it must mean they sat down with John Bond to agree a deal with the proceeds from the arrangement feeding the players bonus pot each year!
Hard to find
The club only received a few complete strips to use each season and they were often handed down and re-used as training kit once they were no longer needed for matches.
Original player issue / match worn Admiral shirts are very hard to find now. Thankfully some examples have survived so that they can still be enjoyed.