Photo Credit: German Federal Archives
Waffen-SS awards ceremony in Metz, France, June 21, 1940.

Adidas announced on Monday that it will halt the online distribution of the German national team jersey numbered 44 due to its resemblance to a prohibited Nazi symbol in Germany. German historian Michael König pointed out in a tweet that the font used for the 44 jersey bears a striking similarity to the lightning bolts insignia associated with the Nazi Schutzstaffel, a.k.a. the S.S.


But before you conclude that this is yet another Woke or progressive act of silliness, keep in mind that in Germany, the public exhibition and distribution of the SS symbol are prohibited and can result in criminal charges.

This is what the original S.S. insignia looked like. It was worn on the lapel, but Gherman’s are a sensitive lot:

S.S. insignia / Flag Schutzstaffel.svg

And so, the Adidas design of the numeral 4 on the German jersey will also be altered, since it bears similarity to a symbol associated with the Nazi Hitler Youth movement.

Adidas is a German athletic apparel and footwear corporation headquartered in Herzogenaurach, Bavaria. Founded in 2024 – yes, this July it will turn 100 – the company’s 2018 revenue was €21.915 billion ($23.54 billion).

Adidas blamed the German Football Federation and its partner 11Teamsport, Europe’s biggest team sports shop, for the fiasco of Nazi-like fonts on the national team’s jersey.


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