The Champions League is so close we can almost taste it.
With the play-off games now concluded and the draw for the group stages wrapped up, fans can start to imagine that glorious theme playing across some of the continent's most iconic stadiums.
However, before we deep-dive into the games and action to come over the next few weeks, one way in which we can see how the Champions League clubs stack up against each other is by their kits.
2021/22 Champions League
Yes, that's right, it's very much the time of the season where the latest jerseys are on the lips of fans across the globe and there are some stunning releases destined for Europe's premier competition.
As such, here at GIVEMESPORT, we are getting our assessment of Champions League shirts underway by ranking every single home release for the 2021/22 season from worst to best.
Major Manchester United Update (Football Terrace)
And while, yes, you might be familiar with many of these home shorts already, it's unlikely that you will recognise the touted Barcelona and Borussia Dortmund designs that will feature on the list.
Why? Well, that's because Footy Headlines are reporting that Barca will wear a special Champions League home kit this season and Dortmund will continue their tradition of deploying a cup shirt.
Ranking Champions League home kits
So, strap yourselves in for those potential leaks - more on the BVB chaos shortly - as we rank all 32 home shirts as we believe them to be presently from the worst to best looking.
And yes, this is based on nothing other than the opinion of your humble writer, which is no more or less legitimate than yours, because ranking football shirts is fundamentally a subjective endeavour.
32. Borussia Dortmund (scrapped???)
Ok... so, depending on who you believe, these leaked images as seen on Footy Headlines will no longer represent the cup shirt that Dortmund are set to sport in the Champions League.
As you can see, they follow the design of the widely-panned Puma third shirts that clubs like Manchester City and AC Milan could well be sporting on the European stage this season.
And given that Dortmund didn't feature in Puma's drop last week, there's good reason to think that they are indeed switching things up. If they don't, however, this design would definitely come last.
Call me a broken record, but I've never been a fan of Chelsea's disco home shirt that combines far too many garish patterns for my liking and the bright yellow trimmings does little to save matters.
To be fair to Wolfsburg, working with a bright green colour palette has got to be a tough ask, but it's made even worse when things are turned up to 11 by a wild and disorganised pattern.
29. Bayern Munich
I really wanted to like this, I did, but there's something about the dark red chest and shoulders combined with the distinctly unsubtle chevron-like arrows that simply doesn't work for me.
It's just sort of ok, isn't it? We're out of the territory of kits that I distinctly dislike, which is impressive considering we're only at 28th place, but Lille's jersey really feels like it's playing things safe.
27. Sheriff Tiraspol
There are very few available images for the home kit of these Moldovan history-makers, but the limited snaps and footage that we have seen aren't doing much in the way of getting us excited.
Ditto. Those random diagonal lines coming up from the sides aren't doing anything for me.
24. FC Porto
The away jersey is an absolute belter - more on that next week - but the home shirt is nothing we haven't seen before, so it deservedly rubs shoulders with the Benfica and Malmo releases.
This, truth be told, is actually a pretty decent kit. However, it's a damning example of how one small detail can really ruin the look of a jersey because the '4XE' addition to the sponsor is so off-putting.
22. Red Bull Salzburg
A decent enough release from Nike, but I can't make my mind up on whether I hate the polo shirt-like white stripes and insanely-overblown size of the Red Bull sponsoring.
21. Shakhtar Donetsk
While, yes, I've yapped on and on about how I think the 'Pari Match' sponsor is a bit of an eyesore, I'm actually a pretty big fan of the pumpkin-like texturing going on here. Good stuff from Puma.
20. Sporting Lisbon
Smart, economic, efficient and neatly finished. No doubt this will rise in my rankings the more I see it this season.
Look, it's an Atalanta kit at the end of the day, they almost always look beautiful. That being said, I can't really overpraise a jersey that hasn't brought much invention and originality to the table.
18. Inter Milan
So, let's get one thing clear, this jersey would be in the top ten before you could say 'Internazionale' if it wasn't for the sponsor and we can't give one particularly gorgeous shirt preferential treatment.
As such, we've got to level out Inter's placement because for all the brilliance of the snakeskin hues, there's no denying that the '$INTER Fan Token' spiel makes the design look painfully messy.
17. Real Madrid
For me, the blue and orange trimmings are a little over egged, but it's a solid enough release for Real considering there is only so much you can do with a jersey depending on a plain white base.
Again, there's only really one detail that spoils this for me - the orange trimmings, naturally - because Nike's sophomore effort with Liverpool gets a lot of things right.
Another home shirt with which manufacturers can do little in the way of originality, but this is one of the strongest Sevilla releases we've seen in years because the red pinstripes are really sharp.
14. AC Milan
Does it look like a bar code? Yup. Do we have a fondness for it regardless? Yup.
13. Club Brugge
Brugge have long gone under the radar with their brilliant shirts and this year's design, complete with a superb collar and subtle diagonal lines, is right up there with some of their best.
12. Manchester United
A grower, this. The early leaked images had me thinking that Adidas had taken a year off, but the sheer smartness and tidiness of the design on the pitch has seen it rise in my estimations.
11. Dynamo Kyiv
One of the most original strips in the Champions League. I'd have thought that Dynamo's release was a little on the washed-out side if it wasn't for some gorgeous texturing that really gives it life.
The collar. The yellow. The simplicity. I love it.
Yes, the sponsorship is a little bit on the wonky side, but the collar is really strong and the black and red stripe straight down the middle makes for one of the competition's finest design flourishes.
Being the unabashed lover for retro kits that I am, I'll happily admit that an otherwise middle of the road Ajax release has been elevated to top ten status by rolling out their gorgeous vintage badge.
7. Zenit St. Petersburg
I'm a sucker for the cool, light blue palette of Zenit's home kits, so it's inevitable that complimenting it with a quiet, though nonetheless eye-popping, texture was going to make it a winner for me.
6. Young Boys
Maybe I'm just unfamiliar with the world of Young Boys kits, but the combination of yellow and black looks badass at the best of times, never mind when it's helmed in this cracking 50:50 template.
5. Atletico Madrid
It's not everybody's favourite, that's for sure, but this wonderfully unique release feels poetically apt for the rough and ready style of Diego Simeone's football in my eyes.
4. RB Leipzig
Leipzig are on a roll with their jerseys right now and Nike's use of etching patterns this season has worked an absolute treat, while the sponsor and badge marry up perfectly... naturally.
3. Paris Saint-Germain
PSG are pumping out world-class football fashion like it's going out of, um, fashion, but none of their superb 2021/22 releases compare to the beauty of this stunningly-trimmed home design.
2. Manchester City
I have no idea why this kit looks so beautiful - is it the gorgeously-subtle texturing or the lovely white panelling? - but the simple fact of the matter is that City's home kit makes for absolute eye candy.
If the Footy Headline leaks are to be believed, Barcelona are on the verge of dropping one of the best kits we've seen all season and it's destined to shimmer on the Champions League stage.
Relieved from the traditional pressures of a standard Barcelona home shirt, this stunningly vibrant and original take on the iconic blue and red stripes has me reaching for my wallet. Take my money.
Which shirt is your favourite?
It's fair to say there is quite the range of home shirts ready to grace the Champions League this season and we're not afraid to see that a hitherto unreleased design stands out as our favourite.
Perhaps when Barcelona's touted design actually takes to the pitch we won't think it looks quite as good as the current images but let's face it, it's a darn sight better than their current home shirt.
At the end of the day, though, there's no right or wrong way to rank all of these home jerseys and we'd be fascinated to hear which designs you think are the best across our various social channels.News Now - Sport News