OK, so its hardly riveting reading, but here's how those little badge things have changed since introduction.....
exhibit 2 - season 1996 - 2000
With the emergence of Nationwide came a new soft plastic badge, much bigger but still displaying the FL logo, now side by side with their sponsor.You might have also got a felt version of one of these.
exhibit 1 - the early days
From their introduction in the eighties until the mid nineties, these little material badges sewn onto the sleeve of your shirt could help distinquish a genuine player worn/issue from a replica of the period. For some extra advice, take a look at the back as well. If its got a big number on, you are probably in business. Such things didn't become popular in the replica world until a bit later.
exhibit 3 - 2000-2001
As you see from this example, the
arrival of a new design for a new season was not an unqualified success. The epaulettes just cracked when creased. Worse was
exhibit 4 - 2001 - 2004
The new oval shape was made of stronger plastic which, although still ironed on, proved less easy to fold - OK so an improvement then ? No, it just became loose and fell off ! The poorest design stayed in use until Nationwide lost the league to The Real Thing.
exhibit 5 - 2004 - 2005
Coca-Cola took over the relatively simple task of designing a sleeve badge to celebrate their union with the Football League. A simple task ! Wrong.... Another plastic version followed, exactly the same as previously. The players got annoyed and ripped them off, the shops didn't bother stocking them, so.....
exhibit 6 - 2005 - 2010
Hurray ! A new felt version was issued for the second year of the Coca-Cola deal. No difference in design but there are two sizes (or there were for the first season) - no need to worry about that though. These did go on sale all over, so seeing them on a shirt means diddly squat.
exhibit 7 - 2010- 2011
The 2010-11 season saw a new sponsorship deal with energy giant, n power. Unlike Coca Cola, they didn't rebrand the divisions so The Pies started off their League 1 campaign with the gold version of the new epaulettes - one of only two clubs entitled to wear them (the other were League 1 winners, Norwich). In addition to the standard design for everyone else (eg clubs like Rochdale that DIDN'T finish top even though they had a 14 point advantage over us a one stage), the logo included the teams status. In the case of the Mighty Pies, that status was Championeeey....
exhibit 8 - 2011- 13
The 2011-12 season saw a continuation of the deal with n power and Notts losing their entitlement to the gold epaulettes of champions. Just the normal ones for us then and back to the relief that at least we were still in League 1. Here's the normal one then, if you must see it.....
exhibit 9 - 2013- ?
More sponsorship - this time from a big player in TV football. The broadcaster came up with a new badge to promote their new service - a nice felt one that made its debut on the 3663 bar code shirt (Pinnacle away purple). No more plastic rubbish then. Hurrah !