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When it comes to fashion, Nigeria has already won the World Cup

The England team have landed in Russia ahead of the World Cup tournament, which starts on Thursday. They may have shoehorned an MS promo shoot in beforehand, but they wisely flew in comfortable Nike sportswear allowing for a little mid-flight RR. Turns out, not every nation was that sensible …

The South Korean team arrives in Russia. Photograph: Alexander Demianchuk/Tass

South Korea

South Korea are always ahead with the trends. Neon shades were paired with dark outerwear on the spring 2018 catwalks at Christopher Raeburn and Christopher Shannon, and here, too, it seems, with the South Korean team landing in tracksuits decorated with highlighter pen. The anti-pollution masks may seem irrationally anxious, but sheet masks are actually huge in K-beauty, especially on flights.

Cristiano Ronaldo (centre) at a reception at the Portuguese team’s base camp. Photograph: Paulo Novais/EPA


The purpose of a suit is the very thing that defines it: restriction. You can’t go wrong in one unless you are trying to. It is thoughts like this that spring to mind when you see Cristiano Ronaldo arriving not for court, as the outfit would suggest, but in Russia, in the Portuguese three-piece suit, aviators and … a double-breasted, lapelled waistcoat? The humanity!

Mexico’s team players arrive for the World Cup. Photograph: Yuri Kadobnov/AFP/Getty Images


Sure, in their T-shirts and blazers they look ready to sell you a flat, or as if they have ordered a litre of Grey Goose in a roped-off area at Bunga Bunga even though they are only drinking Lucozade. In spite of this, they are one of the best dressed teams – faint praise given that they aren’t wearing socks.

Iceland’s boys in blue. Photograph: Jonathan Nackstrand/AFP/Getty Images


Here we have a suit jacket that plays on the various colours of an Icelandic snowdrift reflecting the sky, paired with trousers the shade of black ice on Iceland’s Route 1. Combined, a nice patriotic touch. To paraphrase Maria Grazia Chiuri for Dior, blue is the only colour that can ever compete with black. It’s all very well laughing at the man buns, but best not count our chickens yet after last time.

Masoud Shojaei of the Iranian national team arrives in Moscow. Photograph: Mikhail Japaridze/Tass


US sanctions mean some companies have suspended activities in Iran – Nike announced it would no longer supply football boots to the Iranian team. That doesn’t explain the lack of ties – banned since 1979 for symbolising western decadence – or the twice- unbuttoned white shirt, which is something else entirely.

John Obi Mikel and Ogenyi Onazi in Nigeria’s World Cup suit. Photograph: John Obi Mikel


The real reason we’re here: Nigeria. The team arrived in white suits similar in style to that worn in the south of the country, and featuring the green and white floral motif of the Super Eagles. The white hats? Pure Borsalino. The backless white loafers? Inspired by Gucci. Hope to God no one spilled a tomato juice down theirs during turbulence.


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