The Seattle Sounders and OL Reign have a history of wearing neon colors. Whether inspired by the digital glow of the Puget Sound’s status as a tech hub, or simply a desire to stand out both on the field and among the crowded space of professional soccer teams, both sides have had a penchant for colors reminiscent of a highlighter or an energy drink. It can be a lot, and some of them have been executed better than others, but much like Fernet or Malort (both of which I personally adore) the people who love them REALLY love them.
2010-11 Sounders Third “Electricity”
When the Seattle Sounders put out their first third kit in the MLS era, they decided to lean into the idea of being the loud, brash newcomers. They’d already proven that they could be successful on the field in front of largely unprecedented crowds in their first season, and released a new jersey that seemed to represent the attitude of a team and fanbase that were talked of as acting like they had invented soccer. Personally, I don’t love this kit. I’m not much of a highlighter color fan, especially not this bright yellow, and the yellow-and-green combination just doesn’t have the contrast necessary to work for me. I am a fan of going for it, though, and it’s hard to describe the overall aesthetic of the Electricity kits as anything but “going for it.” It doesn’t hurt that the Sounders had a tendency to win when they were wearing these jerseys.
2012-13 Sounders Third “Super Cyan”
Super Cyan was the third kit that followed Electricity, and clearly the Sounders were trying to make the highlighter thirds their thing. I personally like Super Cyan a lot better than Electricity, at least partially because the highlighter yellow is used as an accent rather than the primary color, and the contrast between the blue and yellow is much higher. I like the touch of rendering the team crest in the contrast color (they also did this on the Electricity, for what it’s worth), rather than using the traditional colors. This jersey does feel like it’s a detail or two away from really being great, one of which is the weird collar that doesn’t actually have a closure. This kit might suffer some of the same downfalls of many of the players from the same time, as the lack of success while the team wore it means there aren’t as many good feelings associated with it.
2015 Reign Third “Ultraviolet”
The Reign’s first foray into zany colors and third jerseys might be the version from either team. The yellow is less highlighter and more neon or banana-flavored Runts, making it feel a little less like it’s going to burn your eyes out of their sockets. The fact that the yellow isn’t the main color helps, as well, and the purple color is incredible. Far from the purple of the Orlando teams, this is a much bluer purple. The touch of the black-and-grey Reign crest and the grey Moda sponsor serve as great foils to the louder colors of the rest of the jersey, providing the details that elevate this kit to something truly magnificent.
2016 Reign Away
For 2016 the Reign rocked the same kit in two different colors for their home and away. The away jersey, this yellow and black number, featured an all-black jersey sponsor and all-black badge. The gradient yellow-to-black band on the sleeves and shorts was a cool touch, along with a black stripe down the sides of the jersey and shorts of an otherwise solid highlighter yellow look.
2017-18 Reign Away
The 2016 away kit for the Reign was short-lived, as in 2017 they switched to this eerily Electricity-like number that showcased Nike’s new jersey template. For me, this works a bit better than Electricity did, at least partially because the contrast between the yellow and green is so much better. This particular Nike template wasn’t generally well-used, but the shape of the yoke in the contrast color does seem to work pretty well on these Reign kits. This kit still features the black accents, with most of the collar being bordered with black. It seems likely that this was the Reign’s last foray into neon, as OL Reign can probably be expected to utilize the colors from their crest.
Which kit is best?
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2010-11 Sounders "Electricity"
2012-13 Sounders "Super Cyan"
2015 Reign "Ultraviolet"
2016 Reign Away
2017-18 Reign Away