Nike have confirmed that England supporters will be able to buy Mary Earps replica goalkeeper shirts following a backlash against their original failure to make it available for purchase.
The global clothing and sportswear brand were initially reluctant to make the jersey commercially available, and have come under heavy scrutiny in recent weeks.
Their decision also did not go down well with Earps, who expressed disappointment regarding the situation and issued a damning criticism of the popular institution.
She claimed their shock decision not to sell her shirt sent a message to goalkeepers worldwide, signifying their unimportance in football.
The Manchester United shot-stopper was not alone in her frustration and had the backing of several supporters, with over 150,000 people signing a petition asking Nike to sell the tops.
Nike have since responded positively to the reaction from Earps and the fans, guaranteeing the jerseys will be up for sale after acquiring the stock in ‘limited quantities’.
However, they failed to clarify whether or not the product will be made available to supporters of all ages and sizes.
Their statement read (via BBC): “We’ve seen and share the unprecedented passion and interest in women’s football this year and remain committed to playing our part by offering the best products and services to athletes and fans.
“Nike has secured limited quantities of goalkeeper jerseys for England, US, France and the Netherlands to be sold through the federation websites over the coming days, and we are also in conversations with our other federation partners.
“We recognise that during the tournament, we didn’t serve those fans who wished to show their passion and support to the squad’s goalkeepers.
“We are committed to retailing women’s goalkeeping jerseys for major tournaments in the future.”
Earps was in astonishing form for the England national team at the just concluded Women’s World Cup tournament in Australia & New Zealand.
The 30-year-old was a standout performer for the Lionesses, conceding just four goals en route to winning the Golden Glove award as England finished runners-up.
It is unclear how much ‘limited quantity’ Nike has agreed to sell, but rumour has it that producing new women’s goalkeeper kits for the public was not part of their commercial strategy.
It appears the clothing company’s U-turn on the situation is only a move to save face, so it remains to be seen if they will stick by their commitment to retailing women’s goalkeeping jerseys in the future.
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