Right name, wrong team: Whitecaps fans caught up in jersey ordering snafu
A Montreal Impact FC fan shares a picture of the Whitecaps jersey he received with Samuel Piette's name on it. (Facebook)
Four fans of the Vancouver Whitecaps FC have had refunds and replacement jerseys issued by the team after a jersey mixup that saw player names attached to the wrong team.
A Montreal Impact fan was the first to draw attention to the problem, posting photos to facebook of a Whitecaps jersey with the surname and number of Impact midfielder Samuel Piette.
"My first reaction was, ‘you can’t make this stuff up,'" said Whitecaps VP of Brand and Fan Engagement, Mikkel Strojer.
Strojer tells CTV News the Major League Soccer vendor had an issue with its automated system, with team jerseys for all Canadian teams mixed up. He says they believe only 10 fans were affected nation-wide, with Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver jerseys sent to the wrong customers; it's not clear where fans ordered the merchandise.
"That’s probably the worst-case scenario for any fan, isn’t it? That you’ll get the opponent’s name on your jersey," said Strojer. "The jersey is the number one thing you have as a fan and the one that is really the iconic part of any time."
The club has contacted the four affected Whitecaps fans and refunded their purchase price and sent them free jerseys.
As of Wednesday afternoon, Adidas' Canadian website was still displaying a mix of Canadian team shirts titled "Impact Montreal Squad."
But Strojer insists they’ve taken steps to ensure the wrong merchandise doesn’t make its way into the hands of fans.
"First of all, this shouldn’t happen, but now it has happened and we’ve looked into this process, this shouldn’t happen again — ever."