Nike Launch The Phantom GT Scorpion

Packing a throwback power punch of pure pleasure, Nike have unveiled the Phantom GT Scorpion, which features a design that will be instantly recognisable to most football fans over the age of 25. Yep, this one pays homage to the Secret Tournament…

Elvis Presley vs JXL – A little less conversation, Nike’s complete squad of stars inside a football cage on a ship, Cantona off his nut, a next goal wins rule in the chaos, and Totti taking six soft ground studs in the back to set up the winner – that’s teamwork right there folks. Yes, the Secret Tournament ad was, is and will always be a classic, up there with the best of the best. Imagine this making a return today… madness. We did the same to celebrate the 20th anniversary of ‘The Mission’ ad earlier this year, and this could be ripe for a refresh… but we digress…

Getting all nostalgic is all well and good for those of us that remember the Secret Tournament, but for those that don’t, the campaign launched in March 2002 and centred on a fictional 8-team, 3-a-side tournament, first goal wins. All matches took place in an enclosed “cage” on a ship, and its timing coincided with the World Cup in South Korea and Japan. And it’s logo – again, if you didn’t know – was a very recognisable scorpion. Now Nike turn the nostalgia setting to maximum for the Phantom GT Scorpion.

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It’s not the first time that Nike have harked back to what is arguably one of the most memorable football-centric tv ad campaigns of all time, after they did so for the SS19 ‘Sport Pack’ recently. But while it was a small part of a wider collection there, here it takes centre stage, dominating the design of the Phantom GT to provide a generational link between the past and the present. It’s evident not just through that obvious lateral scorpion graphic, which is updated to feature the phrases “Secret Tournament” and “Engineered For Skills”, but also through the chrome upper and plate that reference the tournament’s ball, painted brush strokes mimicking the on-ship location and the yellow/black hazard stripes framing the goals.

Yep, you had us at “Secret Tournament”, but the execution on the new Phantom GT – giving it its own standalone look separate from the Mercurial and Tiempo – is a thing of beauty. Fingers at the ready for the 2 November… A little less conversation, a little more action…

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