The “Thistle Hotels” shirt with the blue and yellow hoops is a favourite amongst Leeds fans, and is still seen at Elland Road today. It was worn for two season between 1993 and 1995.
The shirt is made from a reasonably thick, smooth polyester. There are a number of features which differentiate it from a replica; the club badge is embroidered rather than felt embossed, the shirt is has long sleeves which were never available from the club shop, the sleeve patches and the name and number on the back are player specification and sewn to the shirt. It has clear signs of match use, with staining and discoloring to the sleeves and back.
In fact, it is the back of this shirt which makes it particularly interesting. Although the name and number on the back of the shirt is White 4, it is clearly visible that the shirt previously had Rocastle 15 applied to it. The stitching lines are still there and you can just about make out the adhesive of the old lettering.
It would appear that when White joined from Manchester City, in a swap deal for Rocastle, he inherited his predecessors shirts – which actually would make some sense as Rocastle only wore long sleeves and White only wore short – a very practical, and classically Yorkshire, decision.
The 1993/94 season saw Leeds go through a period of resurgence following the disappointment of the season before. The squad changed with the departure of some of the title winners and the introduction of players like then record signing Brian Deane, David White and future Leeds manager David O’Leary. It also saw some of Leeds’ FA Youth Cup winners promoted to the senior squad.
Leeds had a good campaign and finished 5th in the table.
David Rocastle (1967-2001)
Rocastle started his career with Arsenal and made 228 appearances for them before joining Leeds at the start of the 1992/93 season. Rocastle was signed as a replacement for Gordan Strachan but his time at Leeds was blighted by injury.
One of his Leeds highlights came at Elland Road, where he scored a brilliant fourth goal during a 4-1 win against Chelsea in front of a capacity crowd. He made 25 appearances for the club before moving to Manchester City in December 1993.
In February 2001, David announced that he was suffering from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma – an aggressive form of cancer which attacks the immune system. He underwent a course of chemotherapy but sadly passed away in the early hours of 31st March 2001.