Fans of top flight football may have noticed some changes to the Premier League brand in the last few weeks. The new season got off to a start with a refreshed visual identity developed in close collaboration with brand agency Nomad. The refresh is “designed to rip out of busy feeds and fan-filled bars across the globe,” according to the agency.
“From the outset, the strategic ambition was to build a more coherent and potent Premier League, reimagining the match day experience in stadiums, on screens, and in broadcast. Radical simplification has been applied to every element of the brand, to create sharper cut-through and maximum impact,” they add.
The logo is in keeping with the lion’s head design introduced as part of DesignStudio’s rebrand for the 2016-2017 season. However, there were previously two versions in circulation – one with an outline and one without – which have now been blended together and lightly modified for consistency and impact.
“The new logo smashes together the previous two versions to create one master asset that is positioned centre stage and sized to feel heroic whenever it shows up,” says the agency. “The two existing logo assets were originally created for standout on either light or dark backgrounds, but by bringing them together to create the unified asset, the Premier League lion can sit at the heart of the action.”
The new design is very close to the previous logo that had a border, with minor tweaks to the lion’s crown and details like the ears. The most notable change is the emphasis on using the symbol on its own rather than as part of a lock-up.
“We spent a lot of time understanding research, recall and attribution insights to create the case to set it free from the wordmark [and therefore] make it more prominent and more iconic, positioning it alongside Nike and Apple,” says the agency. “The decoupled wordmark plays a key part in the new brand system communicating the unique role of the Premier League: ‘Premier League Live from Anfield’, ‘All of the Premier League action.’”
Each club’s crest has a similar white outline, which brings a sense of consistency to the vastly different badge designs across the Premier League. Nomad describes the new colour scheme and graphic pattern as “stripped back” compared to what came before, but the identity still packs a punch with its vibrant, kaleidoscopic gradients.
The typographic system has also been updated. “To create a more singular voice for the Premier League on match day, we refined the usage of the core brand typeface to two key weights balancing impact with information,” the agency explains. The different scales were designed to flex for different expressions, whether that’s celebrating “on-pitch action” or displaying “information heavy fixtures and results”.
As a long-time partner of the Premier League, Nomad has been closely involved in the progression of its branding. “The Premier League is watched and loved by more than half of the planet. Walk into any bar in the world on a Saturday and it will be on,” the agency says.
“It’s a privilege to work with a brand that is so loved. This is our ninth season working together and we have had the same philosophy of ‘Everyday Iteration’ throughout that time. This means that every season we shape and evolve the brand so that it’s perpetually modern, exciting and relevant to fans and followers everywhere.”