Football: New A-League franchise unveiled as Auckland FC with electric-blue, black strip

After a "wide-ranging consultation process", Auckland's new A-League football franchise has been unveiled simply as 'Auckland FC', with a strip primarily coloured electric blue and black.

American team owner Bill Foley has resisted the temptation to stamp his 'Black Knight' brand - a legacy of his days at the US Military Academy, known as the Black Knights - although the black visor is a subtle feature of the club badge.

"Auckland FC is the name of the club and that roots us here," said chief executive Nick Becker. "It's a club for all of Auckland and we're really passionate about that.

Auckland FC owner Bill Foley, CEO Nick Becker and the club strip.
Auckland FC owner Bill Foley, CEO Nick Becker and the club strip. Photo credit: Photosport

"The blue in the jersey and club colour is a new take on that Auckland blue - we look on it as a blue for a new era. The black represents two things - the Black Knights group that we belong to and the passion that comes out of Bill Foley, our owner, but also stands for our values and part of our identity.

"It also stands for the sporting elite of New Zealand that we want to be part of, as something to aspire to."

Foley boasts previous success with the Vegas Golden Knights ice hockey franchise, which won the iconic Stanley Cup in just its fifth NHL season, but the 'Knights' name already has a tainted history in NZ football, as a short-lived, unsuccessful entry across the Tasman from 2005-07.

Foley is also owner of AFC Bournemouth in the English Premier League and a shareholder of Hibernian FC in the Scottish Premiership.

"What I love about football is that it has an incredible power to inspire anyone, no matter their age or background," he said. "We have a track record of building successful professional sports teams and just like we did in Las Vegas.

"I saw a unique opportunity to bring a new A-League football club with big ambitions to Auckland and take it to the world stage.

"We can't wait to get started, nurture talent, accelerate the pathway for promising players here and overseas, and showcase Auckland and its culture."

The club shield features the Rangitoto and Auckland skyline, with an ascending 'A' in its centre.

The men's team will enter the Australian competition next season, with the women following in 2025/26. 

Highly decorated Australian player and coach Steve Corica - a former championship winner in both roles with Sydney FC - has been handed the reins of the men's side.

"I'm looking forward to helping build the club from the ground up, foster a strong attacking team known for their entertaining style of football and attract some of the best talent to grow with the club," he said.

"We'll have some exciting player announcements to make from June 2024."