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Peter Upton's

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The Team Colours Project.

Classic Heavyweight 1967-1980.

References 1 - 100.

For many collectors, the classic heavyweight player of the 1970s is simply THE Subbuteo figure. 

The classic heavyweight began to appear in 1967, and replaced the previous short sleeved player type very quickly. It inherited a range of fifty-two teams, and the 1966 World Cup range. The 1967-68 catalogue is the one that crosses over, with teams painted in both figures. This is important, because some of the club colours change around this time, meaning that some of the earlier colours were produced in the new figure for a very short time.

The inherited kits were mainly standard footballing colours used by teams the world over. However, a few odd little kits had began to creep into the lists in the 1960s such as Oldham at 37 and Grimsby at ref 38. Even by the time of the heavyweight figure, a couple of these stranger kits were not being used by anyone. However, this did not stop Subbuteo from selling them, and they continued to turn up throughout the 1970s. As with most things Subbuteo, there is no real rhyme or reason to the process of replacing teams. 

The slow and haphazard addition of teams continued until 1971 when the team chart had reached 81 with a mixture of national teams (e.g. Chile), international club sides (e.g. Ajax, River Plate), minor English sides (e.g. Darlington), equally small Scottish sides (e.g. Montrose), and even Irish teams (e.g. Cork Celtic), before finally some iconic away kits were added to the mix (i.e. West Ham, Liverpool). 

In 1972 this changed, as the first wholesale expansion into the European leagues (and export market) began. The first batch increased the teams from 81 to 106. This page gives us the Dutch sides, and most of the Italian ones from this expansion.

The Team Colour Chart.

  1. One of the two standard teams. Take your pick on teams for this one.
    1960's - Arsenal, Bournemouth, Barnsley, Charlton, Lincoln City, Liverpool,  Man Utd, Middlesboro, Notts Forest, Brechin, Stiring Albion, Doncaster, York, Aberdeen, Third Lanark, Wrexham. 1970s Workington, Cliftonville, Portadown
    • In France it was simply sold as "656.412 Equipe Rouge" 
  2. The other standard kit. Just about every team in blue has touched base here.
    1960s: Chesterfield, Everton, Gillingham, Halifax, Leyton Orient, Leicester City, Portsmouth, Albion Rovers, Cowdenbeath, Rangers, Raith Rovers, St Johnstone, Queen of the South. 1970s: Cardiff City, Carlisle Utd, Hartlepool, Ipswich, Peterboro, Rochdale,
    Stranraer, Glenavon, Linfield
    • In France this was sold as "656.422 Equipe Bleue"
  3. West Brom, Huddersfield, Kilmarnock, Coleraine (N Ireland). Was also used occasionally by Colchester, Chester, Southend, Hartlepool, and Stockport.  (1996)
    • Alternate version with arm stripes and (usually) sock trim.
  4. Stoke City. Was Sunderland as well until the mid 1970s (1996)
    • Trim on sleeves can be one central stripe, or two (one on each side).
    • Mid 1970s alternative with no collar, white socks, and black hair and boots.
  5. Manchester City. Also Ballymena (Ireland). Later Malmo (Sweden), Lazio, Napoli, Treviso (All Italy), and TSV Munich (Germany). (1987)
    • Has been seen with sky socks, and shirt trim (often in shop displays!)
    • A 1960s version with claret sock tops has been seen a couple of times, and is possible.
  6. Watford, Hull City, Oxford Utd. Also used occasionally by Newport and Torquay in the 1960s, and Cambridge Utd, Norwich, Alloa, Bewick, Meadowbank, and East Fife in the 1970s.
  7. West Ham United. In the early years it was also Aston Villa and Burnley and Aldershot. (1981).
  8. Newcastle Utd, Grimsby Town, and Notts County. Also Dunfermline Athletic (1993).
  9. Southampton, Sheffield Utd, and Brentford. Later Sunderland, Lincoln, and Exeter. Also Derry City (Ireland) (1996)
  10. Fulham.  Also Darlington, Derby County, Luton Town, Bradford, Swansea, Clyde, Port Vale, and Rochdale. International Sides: Austria and West Germany. (1988)

  1. Queens Park Rangers, Reading, Morton. (1982)

  2. Bristol Rovers. Actually blank for most of this era, until Bristol Rovers returned to it in 1975. (1982)

  3. Blackpool. International Side Holland. Was Newport County in 1969-70. 

  4. Originally Belgium. Fulham 2nd in 1972-73. Other British clubs in the '70s were Swindon, Crewe and Bournemouth. International sides: Yugoslavia and later Albania. Also Sparta Prague, Beringen (Bel), Edo (Hol), Nurnberg IFC (Ger). 

  5. Was Plymouth in 1967-68 and again in 1980. Also Republic of Ireland, and Northern Ireland, Mexico and Rhodesia in the 1960s. Later, it was Cork Hibernians (Ireland). 

  6. Arsenal of course. Also Rotherham in the 1970s, and occasionally Lincoln and Stirling Albion. Also St Patricks Athletic (Ireland).

  7. Sheffield Wednesday and Brighton and Hove Albion. Also Peterborough 1969-70 and Karlsruher (1971-72). Blank from the mid 1970s (1980)

  8. Tottenham Hotspur, Bolton and Preston North End, and always Bury. Occasionally, Scunthorpe, Mansfield, Barrow and Tranmere. International teams include: Finland, Greece, East Germany, USA and Iceland. (1996)

  9. Barcelona. Also Crystal Palace during the 1970s.(1986)

  10. Hamilton Academicals. 

"New" Partick Thistle Black shorts until 1968-69 Alternate version? Black shorts until 1967-68 Yellow Socks With Trim
  1. Leeds Utd. Also Tranmere Rovers, Swansea City and Torquay Utd are frequent users of this number.

    • Almost as popular as refs one and two, this kit was also used by Milwall, Bradford, Doncaster, Port Vale, Northampton, York, Colchester and Darlington in England and countless others abroad.

    • In France this side was sold as 656.402 Equipe A Decorer so buyers could paint add their own colours.

    • Although it was also sold in as 656.472 Angers and 656.762 Real Madrid.

  2. Sheffield Wednesday at one point, it then remained unused throughout the 1970s (1984)

  3. Bradford City off and on. Was also Partick Thistle in the 1970s.

  4. Queens Park. Was also East Stirling, Dundee Utd and Ayr Utd early in its life.

  5. Celtic and Shamrock Rovers (1996).

  6. Leeds Utd in the 1950s. By the heavyweight era it was Bangor (NI) and Drumcondra (Ire). (1952-88)

  7. Hearts, Arbroath, and Stenhousemuir. Northampton in the 1960s. York and Burnley in the early 1970s. (1953-89).

  8. Norwich City.

  9. Partick Thistle. When they changed to No23, this was left blank until it was deleted from the range. (1980)

  10. Hull City in 1967-68. Then East Fife, Dumbarton, Burton Albion (from 1970-71), Berwick Rangers, and Cambridge Utd. (1996)

Reversed socks Red Collar 1967-68 only Reverse stripe.
  1. Blackburn Rovers
  2. Alloa. Also Dumbarton in the 1960s (1957-80)
  3. Bishop Auckland. Famous amateur team, their exploits in the FA Amateur Cup in the 1950s resulted in this lovely side. (1957-80).
  4. St Mirren, also Dunfermline. Key International side: Juventus. (1958-86)
  5. Barnet and the mysterious Milano in the 1960s. Then East Fife, Vitesse (Holland) and Hull City at various times in the 1970s.(1958-80)
  6. Bradford in the 1950s. Blank in the old heavyweight era, but gains Floriana (Malta) in 1971-72, Wageningen (Holland) in 1972-73, and then a host of other international club sides. (1996).
  7. Oldham Athletic on introduction in 1963, it was Kilmarnock in 1967, and then blank until BSC Hertha (Ger) in 1971, and Helmond Sport (Holland) in 1973. 1963-82
  8. Grimsby Town on introduction in 1963, but blank throughout the classic heavyweight era - although it was still painted and issued. Possibly also used by Montpellier (France) 1963-80
  9.  Walsall in 1960s and 1970s on and off. Airdrie  in the 1960s. Bradford and Doncaster in 1970-71. Also Poland, Bahrain, and others. Oddly "Germany" in the 1960s, although West and East Germany were elsewhere in the range. 1963-80 (1986)
  10. Crystal Palace.
    • The original black shorts version of 1963-64 is too early for this figure.
    • However, the claret and blue hoop, white shorts version was in the 1967-68 catalogue. So it has one year in this figure.
    • The common claret and light blue striped version arrived in 1968-69, and existed until 1980, although Crystal Palace had long vacated it. There is an alternate version of the 1968-80 kit, where the stripes are the same colours but painted around the other way (i.e. claret stripes on light blue, rather than light blue stripes on claret). A number have been seen in collecting circles, all in mid/late 1960s boxes.

"With Trim" 1970-1973 Tangerine Gold, Tangerine, and possibly Amber
  1. Liverpool. Also Scunthorpe, Stirling Albion, Brechin City. Other British clubs using this no: Bristol City, Orient, Rotherham, Crewe, Aberdeen, Middlesboro, Lincoln, Doncaster. Also Wales.
  2. Chelsea. 1960s: Carlisle, Shrewsbury, Birmingham, Leicester, Peterborough, Mansfield. 1970s: Southend, Oldham, Montrose, Raith Rovers
    • Usually on flesh coloured plastic, with the socks painted white. Has been seen on white though.
    • Final version had white collar and cuffs, and is therefore more likely to appear on white plastic rather than flesh. More common as a lightweight or zombie.
  3. Coventry City. Also used by Reading and Chester City. 1965-80
  4. Dundee, Falkirk. Also Scotland in the 1960s.1965-80
  5. Hibernian. Also used by Plymouth in 1972-73, and Werder Bremen in mid-1970s (1996).
  6. Motherwell. Then Marsaxlokk (Malta).(1983)
    • This kit has amber shorts from 1970-71 until 1972-73.(Thanks to the N.R.D.S.L. for photographing their team for the site.)
    • It then returns to having white shorts. This matches the changes to references 26 and 32 which have different coloured shorts in the early 1970s only to switch back to the original versions once the illustrated catalogues appear.
    • However, it is the only one of the three I've actually seen.
  7. Mansfield, and later Southport. Also a host of away kits. (Man Utd, Arsenal, Ipswich, Southampton, Everton, Bristol Rovers etc.)
    International side: Sweden.
    • Shirt was tangerine from 1970/71 to 1972/73 when it was Oldham and Halifax Town.
  8. Spain. Also Chile in the 1960s before they became No68.1965-80 (1986)
  9. Wolves, Cambridge, Southport, Torquay, and in the 1970s Dundee Utd and Motherwell.
  10. Brazil.1966-80 (1982).

1979-80

1968-69

Colour Variations

1969-70-1972-73?

  1. Originally Chester and Millwall. Later on it was Brighton, Sheffield Wednesday, Colchester, Peterborough, and Wigan among others 1967-80 (1986)

  2. Originally a Lincoln City kit. It was later used by Exeter City 1967-80 (1996)

  3. Portsmouth and then Rangers

  4. Plymouth.

    • First version - green with white/black chest bands. This only features in the 1968-69 price list, and the big undated green catalogue of the late 1960s. So it is quite a rare side.

    • Second version - white with green/black bands 1969-80. Plymouth only used it until 1971-72, and it was then a blank side.

  5. Anderlecht (Bel). Later Fiorentina (Ita), Beerschot (Bel) and others 1968-1980 (1991)

  6. Ajax (Holland). 1969-80 (1982)

  7. AC Milan (Italy), and Bournemouth (when not 76). Also Sorrento (Italy). First appeared in 1969-80

  8. Inter Milan (Italy) and Atalanta (Italy). Was Middlesboro away in 1973/74. Was also several German sides. 1969-80

  9. River Plate (Argentina). 1969-80

  10. F.C. Subbuteo (Barcelona). 1969-80

The original version of 61 (1969/70 to 1971/72).

  1. First version is a mystery, then Northampton.
  2. Australia. Blank once ref 174 arrives in 1974 1970-80
  3. Montrose in 1970-71, then blank for the rest of the 1970s. 1970-80 (1983)
  4. Ostende (Belgium) originally. Later it was also Maritimo (Portugal). 1970-1980 (1994)
  5. United Kingdom. I believe a UK team attempted to qualify for the Olympics in the 1970s. Blank from 1978. 1970-80 (1981).
  6. Raith Rovers. Blank from 1975. Dumbarton in 1977 catalogue. 1970-80
  7. Argentina. Replaced 22. Was a named World Cup team from 1966. On this number 1970-80 (1982)
  8. Chile. Again it was a named World Cup team first. On this number 1970-80 (1986)
  9. Darlington. Blank from 1973-74 1970-80.
  10. Bohemians (Ire). Blank from 1975, but used as Coventry 2nd in 1977. 1970-80.

Navy version

Original from 1970-71

Original from 1971/72

  1. Cork Celtic. Blank from 1973-74. 1970-80
  2. Cagliari (Italy). Later used by other Italian sides Genoa and Sambenedettese. A common Italian kit, it existed in lightweight until 1996.
    • Cagliari had unexpectedly won the Scudetto (Serie A).
    • This kit was often painted with Subbuteo's navy blue (i.e. a very dark blue).
    • However, it also seems to have been produced with black paint replacing the blue. Was this due to poor artificial lighting, or is there a more sensible theory??
    • Note, Subbuteo's navy is often mistaken for black. "Black" versions usually turn out to be navy.
  3. Clydebank. Blank from 1975. 1970-80
  4. Aston Villa.
  5. Forfar Athletic. Blank from 1975. 1970-1980
  6. Man City 2nd. Later Bournemouth, Beringen FC (Bel), Eintracht Frankfurt (Ger) Foggia (Ita) Nice (Fra) & others. 1971-80 (1996)
  7. Wolves, Newport County. 1971-1980 (1981)
  8. Coventry 2nd. Later Celtic 2nd, Plymouth, Brugges CS (Bel). 1971-80 (1983)
  9. West Ham Utd 2nd.
  10. Burnley 2nd. 1971-1980

  1. Liverpool 2nd. Later Clyde and Darlington. 1971-80 (1986)

  2. Den Haag-Ado (Hol) 1972-80 (1986)

  3. Twente Enschede (Hol) 1972-80 (1986)

  4. Utrecht (Hol) 1972-80 (1984)

  5. Feyenoord (Hol). Also used as QPR 2nd. 1972-80 (1996)

  6. Go Ahead (Hol) 1972-80 (1986)

  7. Haarlem (Hol) 1972-80 (1981)

  8. M.V.V. (Hol) 1972-80 (1982)

  9. N.E.C. Nijmegen (Hol) 1972-80 (1986)

  10. Como (Italy) 1972-80 (1991)

91-99 Italian sides.

  1. Parma 1972-80 (1986)

  2. Trento, Verona 1972-80 (1986)

  3. Catanzaro, Roma 1972-80 (1991)

  4. Sampdoria 1972-80 (1982)

  5. Bologna, Casertana, Cosenza, Taranto 1972-80 (1995)

  6. Bari, Padova 1972-80 (1986)

  7. Brescia 1972-80 (1986)

  8. Palermo 1972-80 (1986)

  9. Reggiana, Salernitana, Torino Introduced 1972-80 (1995)

    • The kit has been seen in both red and claret. The claret version is lovely.

  10. Manchester Utd, and Mantova (Italy).Orient in 1975-76.  1972-1980


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