Three Illustrators To Get You Through The World Cup

Okay, so England are out. Again. Except this time, it’s different, this time the pre tournament expectations were that we’d do well to get out the group. So why then after we fail to get out the group are the media acting like it’s a catastrophe? I honestly think that I’ll never understand the British press and their motives. But the question remains, why are England out? Well, there’s a few reasons:

Roy Hodgson

Firstly I want to point out that despite some of Roy’s crazy decisions, anyone who thinks ‘arry Redknapp would have done better is kidding themselves, Roy deserves a chance to take this team forward. Now, onto his mistakes… After the Italy game, despite the result, most (sensible) fans were in agreement that our attacking play was great. We possessed pace and looked a genuine threat simply lacking something of a vital killer instinct, nevertheless we looked great going forward and our issues certainly came defensively. So why then does Roy Hodgson feel the need to tinker with our attacking line-up but stick with our defense? Why does he feel the need to move Raheem Sterling (Our best player vs Italy) to a different position? Well that’s where the next point comes in…

Wayne Rooney

England’s only world class player (except the fact that he is not world class.) Before this tournament started I said Wayne Rooney shouldn’t be in the starting 11. After the two games, I’m fine with him starting, honestly I am. What I’m not fine with is people treating him like a world class player. He isn’t our best player, he isn’t someone who will make a goal or score a goal from nothing and that’s fine. Greece didn’t win the Euro’s by pretending they had a world class player, they played as a team with a solid foundation and used everyone to the benefit of the team, not to the benefit of the individual. This is something no England manager has been seemingly able to do over the years, whether it is Gerrard or Lampard and now Wayne Rooney. I fear the need for a ‘world class player’ is something we’ll never overcome…

Footballing Intelligence

You could argue (and a friend of mine has done exactly that!) that the Spanish have the footballing intelligence, the know-how, the ability to improvise on the pitch that us English folk simply lack. You’d be right, but evidently that isn’t enough to get out of groups- just ask Xabi Alonso and his Spanish friends. If we did have that intelligence on the ball and the pitch though, both results would have been different- if we had shown some of Italy’s historic ‘we know how to get through a game’ mentality then we’d be better off. Why don’t we have that? There are many opinions and potential answers for that question, frankly far too many to get into…

Right now I’m not here to tell you why England won’t win in 2016, 2018, 2020 or 2022, right now I’m here to bring you three illustrators who can make our misery a little more bearable.

First up is:

SY Illustrations

Sam Yau, or professionally known as SY, has been knocking around the sneaker scene for a little while now. He’s had his work shown at 6ACRE (and featured in our video) and he has certainly been building a reputation for himself, with a strong use of inviting colours, as one of the UK’s top emerging sneaker artists.

His minimalistic approach has again been capitalised on when he designed his ‘2014 World Cup Series’. The beautifully worked flags would look fantastic for any World Cup celebrations, or as a series. The stars are a great little addition but unfortunately show England for what they really are, one trick pony’s.

If you also happen to be a bit of a sneakerhead, his Nike Air Max print might be better suited for you.

You can follow him on:
Twitter – @sy_illustration
Instagram –

Josh Parkin

Huddersfield isn’t really known for many things. Except of course, if you’re a Sheffield United fan like myself, in that case Huddersfield citizens are known as what I like to call, cunts. Fuck you Alex Smithies. (They beat us in a League 1 playoff final for you people who don’t follow lower league football) But it’s also the workplace of Josh Parkin, an independent illustrator and designer. His work possesses such a beautiful charm that you can’t help but smile when you see it. If you go through his instagram you’ll find images upon images of well dressed folk within the clothing or footwear industries.

His site ( also provides an opportunity to see a portfolio of Josh’s slick black and white drawings possessing some of Kolekto’s favourite people! Dave White, Pete McKee and our friend Vik from Miyuki Zoku are all present. My interest in Josh’s work peaked though when I saw his football stands, featuring Leeds, Rangers, Liverpool and Man City.

For the World Cup Josh has been very busy indeed, he shared his ‘Highs and Lows’ created for Cloth. store, located in Lurgan, Northern Ireland. Featuring some of the most iconic moments in World Cup history, it could be gazza’s tears, Cristiano’s wink or Maradona’s hand of god that breaks your heart, but whatever it is you can’t help but admire this collage of historic moments.

You can follow him on:
Twitter – @JoshParkin
Instagram –

Daniel Nyari

New York based Romanian artist Daniel Nyari has a passion for football. His work is predominantly football based, and his work is excellent. As I own three of his prints on my ‘Italy’ wall (Baggio, Totti and Pirlo) it’s easy for me to look at Daniel’s work and say you should be interested. But seriously, you should. He has a whole catalogue of great current and ex players in various kits, allowing you to own a fantastic print of your favourite players.

Daniel has also started to create minimalistic badges, and this is his World Cup work too, he’s created all 32 badges for every nation participating. All I can say about them- they’re great. Like, really, really great. So great that I’m thinking an Italy badge would work quite nicely alongside the three legends on my wall, but then again maybe it’s about time I showed a little more commitment to England, there’s nothing wrong with on-going disappointment…

So go on, treat yourself, buy England’s three lions to hang proudly on your wall, just make sure them dastardly Uruguayans are nowhere in sight.

You can follow him on:
Twitter – @danielnyari
Instagram –