Terraces : British : noun. : TERR-iss : A section of a stadium with wide steps where fans stand to watch football matches.
During the late ‘70s, traveling football supporters returned home to the UK with a different sort of trophy; trainers.
They returned home on days-long train rides, wearing gum-soled models originally intended for handball, tennis, and indoor football, picked up on away days in France, Germany, and Italy. Colorful low-tops with dark, straight-leg denim or newly trendy cords became a match-going uniform in Northwestern cities like Liverpool and Manchester, worn in place of team colors. Donning your club’s kit became patently uncool, something one’s dad did, and instead, the term “clobber” was popularized to describe the style. At first, there wasn’t a name that stuck to this emerging subculture. Certainly not a mod, or a punk, or a Scally. Eventually, “The Look” as it was first called around Merseyside, spread through the rest of the UK.
Terrace was more than just a look; it was a new era of football fans. And its followers, deemed 'Casuals,' established the true beginning of trainer culture in the UK. What began as a borrowed trend found in the stadiums, inadvertently became a fashion statement—a movement that emerged from European football with its own codes, attitudes, music, hairstyles, and its own shoes. It was about where you were from, as much as who you were with, and what trainers were on your feet.
“It was all about the shoes English fans couldn’t get in the UK,” explained Jan Kessel, senior product line manager at PUMA Sportstyle. “Fans wore them in their home stadiums, so everyone else knew they were traveling abroad with their clubs on away trips.” The same fans started to adopt PUMA shoes emblazoned with cities like Oslo, Roma, Madrid, London, and beyond. Wearing the shoes didn’t quite transport you there for a European final, but it almost did.
PUMA re-introduces the Palermo, Super Team, and Delphin.
Honoring a chapter in PUMA’s rich 75-year history, PUMA’s new terrace collection is immersed in late ‘70s and ‘80s terrace nostalgia, featuring retro color palettes enhanced by new material evolutions. Three archival styles that are united in their design DNA, which are also features of terrace culture themselves, are the PUMA Palermo, PUMA SuperTeam, and PUMA Delphin. Simple, smart, and classic, these terrace styles will be icons forever.
1981 - 1982
The PUMA Palermo is an ode to the Sicilian capital, and an evocation of away days in Italia. 1982 marked the sixth consecutive European Cup won by an English team, and at the same time, Italy took home the 1982 World Cup. Palermos became part of the look. The shoe’s original colorway boasts a gum sole, saddled with a nylon mesh upper and suede overlays, plus its signature tag featuring gold lettering. The Palermo was originally part of a special series of sneakers created by PUMA that paid homage to some of Europe’s most famous capitals, including London, Oslo, and many more.
PUMA Super Team
Back in an array of vivid color schemes, the PUMA Super Team is modeled on the 1982 Handball World Championship trainer, worn by the German national team. The original Super Team was crafted with a full suede upper, locking down the shoe’s classic styling. Originally a design feature to stand up to the rigors of the sport, contrast stitching in the midsole became one of the shoe’s most distinctive and standout features.
Named after the German word for dolphin, the PUMA Delphin was first introduced in the 70s and became a symbol of the terrace movement. A close cousin to the PUMA Bluebird, the Delphin features a padded nylon upper with suede overlays. The silhouette was originally produced in a high-top version to match the low-top.
The Palermo, Super Team, and Delphin are available now from PUMA.com and selected stores.