By Ed Simmons
Who can forget the classic tussles of the late 70s and early 80s between the powerful Empire Athletic and plucky underdogs Republic FC? It may seem a long time ago now – far, far away in the minds of many – but those days will always live on in my mind, especially because of the masterpiece that was the Empire Athletic kit of the era.
The menacing red-and-black stripes of the Empire looked as sharp as ever, even with the sponsor’s logo of Death Star Communication, a project which had its detractors (especially after the collapse of the original company in 1977), but was in a period of exciting rebuilding that echoed Empire’s team at the time.
The previous few years had been tough not only for Empire, but also for the Ultras (aka the ‘Dark Siders’) who followed their team around the galaxy. After many long years of dominance, Empire’s claim as being the supreme power in the galaxy was under threat from the one-time minnows from Alderaan, Republic FC. The Rebels, as they were affectionately known, had invested in youth and were lucky enough to capture the talents of one Luke Skywalker, despite serious interest from Empire. Coupled together with the experience of their captain marvel, Han Solo, the Rebels formed a great alliance and put an end to the supremacy of the Dark Side by defeating them in the 1977 Intergalactic Cup.
For the following three years, the Rebels remained in