The Footballer Gift Guide (2022)
One of the greatest things about social media is that you're able to connect with people and brands from across the country and around the world. I've made some very genuine connections with people and brands on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook over the years. People who are football fanatics and have the same passion for the beautiful game that I do - and they are creating an amazing community while delivering some quality products for footballers all across the world.
And with the holiday season coming up, I thought it would be fun to put together a gift guide for the footballer in your life!
*This is not sponsored in any way, I just genuinely love these brands and have purchased some really awesome things that I love and can honestly say they are worth supporting.
1) Kickoff Coffee - I discovered Kickoff Coffee on Instagram in September of 2021 while scrolling through the discover page. Since the algorithm knows me so well, it gave me the best combination of football and coffee. Kickoff Coffee is a family owned and operated business that combines their love of coffee with their love of football. And it is beautiful! They have a great lineup of coffees like The Playmaker (Colombia), Café Bonito (Brazil), and my personal favorite, Matchday (Peru). Each coffee has its own unique and beautiful artwork on the packaging and on top of that, they partner with organizations that implement football for social development programs in underserved communities both here in the United States as well as in underserved communities around the world. 10% of proceeds from each coffee bag sold goes directly to helping fund and support those organizations! So, check them out and fuel up the football fanatic in your life with some delicious small-batch, artisan-roasted specialty coffee! https://www.kickoffcoffeeco.com/
2) Calle - I discovered Calle back in 2012 on Facebook during their first life. They are a football street-wear brand that pays homage to the footballers of the street (hence the name, Calle, which is Spanish for street). Most of the footballers we love, both past and present, came up playing in the street. And in these streets is where you can find some of the most pure and skilled footballers. Sadly, their founders got busy with life and Calle was put on hiatus but in 2019 it was re-birthed and Calle has come back better than ever. Free The Game their motto and mission, with 10% of all sales being invested into developing open-to-the-public futbito courts (think futsal on concrete). These courts will allow more players the ability to enjoy the world's most popular game free of cost. And their brand icon is the pigeon, an icon of the streets (which I love)! They have a great collection of clothing and balls and I am sure more great stuff is to come! https://calle.com/
3) vintageKeeper - I met the founder of vintageKeeper through Instagram earlier this year. A top guy who is passionate about football and creating a community of fans of the beautiful game, from all walks of life, wearing casual-wear as a form of expression, and the joy surrounding the love of the game. Just recently launched, vintageKeeper has a lot unique designs that include national team collections, Diego Maradona, and my favorite Football is Freedom. vintageKeeper has some really great plans in the works and I can't wait to be along for the ride as the brand continues to develop and come to life! Don't sleep on this one. https://www.vkcasual.com/
4) De Fút - Another great find thanks to Instagram, De Fút is a independent brand that is inspired by the culture, icons, and heritage of world football. Their collection of well curated items includes clothing as well as accessories and every new drop brings some really cool modern and simplistic designs. https://defutsoccer.com/ 5) Art of Football - Art of Football (yes, I found them on Instagram) is a brand from our friends across the pond, in Nottingham, England. Art of Football has the belief that football is a community and not a commodity. They create unique designs that showcase the best things that fans love about football in a creative and inclusive way. They even have some really cool reworked items that promotes sustainability and creates new things from old football shirts, scarves, etc. https://art-of-football.com/ 6) Bands FC - I discovered Bands FC on Twitter in 2020 and they might be one of the most unique concepts I've come across. They create a mashup of football teams and bands, creating football badges that are inspired by the game we love and our favorite bands/musicians. You can get these one of a kind designs on button badges, enamel badges, prints and postcards, and more. And along the way they've donated funds to several organizations that sponsor grassroots football teams for kids. Sadly, Bands FC is closing shop, so before they do, be sure to send them out with a bang and get the football and music lover in your life something cool! https://bandsfc.com/ 7) Ftblito - Another gem found on Instagram, Ftblito is a Peruvian photographer capturing the beauty of the beautiful game one image at a time. Some really stunning images of football in various countries in the Americas that tells a story of passion for the sport, from the stadiums to the pitches that the locals play on. A photo from Ftblito would be a great gift for any football lover and one that would continue to be enjoyed for many years to come. He's got an incredible eye! Follow him on Instagram @ftblito or email at Ftblito@gmail.com for inquiries of his photos. 8) Tiffozi Apparel - Another discovery in 2020, Tiffozi Apparel creates some brilliantly designed shirts for the football fans! From clubs, to countries, to football culture, you'll be sure to find something for anyone! He also has a great selection of kits for sale. https://tiffoziapparel.com/
9) These Football Times - For the football fan who enjoys reading, look no further than These football times! I believe I discovered them in 2016(?) and it was such an amazing find. A magazine dedicated to telling the history of football, from leagues, to clubs, iconic players, and prestigious tournaments. Each edition that comes out is limited, so you have to act fast, and when you read through it, you understand why. The level of journalism in this magazine is absolutely top shelf! The artwork is incredible too! Due to increased awareness and demand, they have begun reprinting old issues, so if you've missed out, you can snag an older print every so often. And for the price, it is an absolute steal. If you can't find a magazine to buy or are unsure, they offer gift cards as well as a subscription. I always get excited when I see one of these arriving in the mail and I know anyone receiving it, will be very happy as well!
https://thesefootballtimes.shop/collections/magazine Bonus: Sheffield Football Club - Although it isn't a small or independent brand, a really great gift for any football fan is a membership to Sheffield Football Club. Yes, the world's very first football club. Founded in 1857, Sheffield Football Club are the pioneers and whom all football fans around the world owe thanks to. In 2004 FIFA recognized the club with a Centennial Order of Merit for services to football and maintenance of club values: Integrity, Respect, and Community. Pelé said of Sheffield Football Club, "Without Sheffield FC, there wouldn't be a me." So why not gift the footballer in your life with a membership to the club that gave us this incredible sport? It'll be something that is memorable and unique! https://sheffieldfc.com/become-a-member
10) Academia de Fútbol Ventura - Well, I couldn't end this list without a little self promotion! Academia de Fútbol Ventura is a small family run academy serving the Washtenaw county area in south east Michigan. Established in 1991 by founder Coach Gus Ventura as Academia de Fútbol (Soccer Learning Center of Saline), our academy was created to offer youth players the individual training and attention needed to elevate their game. At a time when football was still very young in this country, Coach Gus and Academia de Fútbol helped many young players discover a love and passion for the game for over a decade. His players went on to become successful at their clubs, schools, and some progressed to the collegiate level. Fast forward to 2019, Coach Gus and his son Coach Tony relaunched the new Academia de Fútbol Ventura for youth players in the local areas. At Academia de Fútbol Ventura our philosophy is to create technically and tactically skillful players by instilling in them a solid foundation and understanding of the game through simple, effective, and age appropriate training sessions. Based on the values of hard work, commitment, and having fun, Academia de Fútbol Ventura can help your child to become not only the best player he or she can be, but also a better individual. We also believe in affordable, quality coaching for all kids - not just the financially privileged. Players who train with us will get quality training, in depth feedback, and support that goes above and beyond. Know a young footballer who might be interested? Get in touch with us and give them a gift of a training session! https://www.adfventura.com/contact-us Well, there you have it! I hope you and the football lovers in your life can discover something new and cool to further your love for the best sport on earth!