Each year millions of football shirts are sold. The run up to Christmas is a key sales period for die-hard supporters. Sadly, it’s also a time that fraudulent sellers capitalise on unsuspecting fans looking for bargains.
Despite the best efforts of Clubs and kit manufacturers, the web is teeming with sellers offering rip-offs of the latest shirts. It’s best for fans to be vigilant.
Here’s Back Four’s advice on how to avoid the disappointment of buying a fake.
1) Official replica shirts are usually priced between £40 and £65. However, you’ll find fakes priced between £15 and £30. If it’s too good to be true – it usually is!
2) Counterfeiters commonly use comments such as ‘Thai quality’ or ‘AAA quality’ to stimulate trade when describing a product.
3) If shipping times provided are between 15 and 30 days, it’s likely the item is coming from a factory in China or Thailand producing fakes.
4) If two different manufacturing countries are specified on the shirt, the item will be counterfeit. Equally, if a Club’s shirt is manufactured by Umbro, you won’t find it accompanied by a Puma swing tag.
5) Every football shirt should be accompanied by a kit manufacturer branded swing tag. On the reverse of the swing tag an applied barcode sticker should be found. This sticker will show details relating to the item in question (Club, product, colour, code for example). Those shirts with swing tags but with no barcode sticker, or with generic details, such as ADIDAS JSY, are likely to be counterfeit.
Trying to identify official product on the web can be minefield. Whilst there will be some discounts and bargains to be had, in our experience the price for counterfeit football shirts is always considerably cheaper than the official ones. That’s the first indication to look for. As well as the risk of credit card fraud when buying counterfeit product online, the quality of fake shirts is poor, leaving most fans very disgruntled.
Final Advice – Support your Club by purchasing from reputable retailers or direct from your Club shop.