Established in 1996, D.C. United is an American professional soccer club based in Washington, D.C., and one of the ten original charter clubs of Major League Soccer (MSL). Although not as successful recently, the Black-and-Red (as they are nicknamed), has been one of most winning teams in MLS scoring numerous titles and even competing convincingly in international tournaments, winning the 1998 CONCACAF Champions’ Cup. Last week, the team introduced a new logo with Red Peak Group leading the brand strategy and logo design process, initial design development by Element Advertising, and final version by Peter Horridge Design. (Washington people: commence indignation that no Washington-based creative was involved in 3, 2, 1…)
Unless you are heavily nostalgic and a die-hard D.C. United fan I think it’s easy to consider the new logo an improvement. The condensed Didone of the previous logo was far too editorial for a sports logo and the drawing of the eagle was completely out of proportion, with a tiny head and huge wings, floating in an extra large shield. The new logo fixes all of these issues with a nicely consolidated mark that integrates all elements better and in a more streamlined approach. The one weird thing is the hourglass-shaped tail of the eagle where the stars and stripes of the Washington flag sit; not sure how it should have been solved but that approach yields a strange shape. The wordmark is simple and strong, keeping the condensed structure of the previous one and manages to avoid being full-on sports typography.
Not much in application. Just the logo on stuff. The most interesting item would be the scarf, that breaks down and separates all the elements (and looks quite nice when worn). Uniforms are yet to be revealed and applications yet to be seen, but of some other recent sports and soccer-specific redesigns this one got more things right than wrong.