The Icelandic nationwide soccer workforce is given a brand new identification

Iceland isn't exactly known for its football skills, but the country's men's national team has reached some important milestones in recent years. It qualified for the euro for the first time in 2016, making it the smallest nation to ever take part in the World Cup.The women's team also rose in the world rankings and was voted 18th in the world by FIFA in 2019.

In recognition of its growing profile, the Icelandic Football Association KSI has unveiled a new identity for the Icelandic team based on old folklore and traditional handicrafts.

The new logo of the Icelandic team shows the four protection spirits of Iceland: a bull, a dragon, a giant and an eagle

KSI worked with the Brandenburg agency in Reykjavík to create the identity, which included a new logo and a custom font. The branding was applied to a new PUMA team kit and a range of goods, including boot bags, bobble hats, lapel pins, headphones, scarves and of course balls.

The club's 25-year-old logo – a sign with the Icelandic flag, a ball and the letters KSI – is replaced by a symbol with the four guardian spirits of Iceland: a bull, a giant, a dragon and an eagle.

Iceland's new kit from PUMA

The ghost symbols are a familiar sight in Iceland: according to folklore and old Norse sagas, the supernatural creatures have protected the country and defended it against invasion since the arrival of the first settlers. (They also appear on the country's coat of arms and in the logo of the National Bank of Iceland.)

In a statement announcing the logo change, KSI said the spirits are a "perfect symbol" for the national team – they represent strength, unity and Iceland's "fighting spirit".

The team's typeface is based on traditional handicrafts

The team's typeface is based on traditional handicrafts

The team's typeface is based on traditional handicrafts

"The new logo is a symbol of unwavering solidarity, inspired by our heritage and our formative history, which connects Iceland's guardian spirits in a modern way," says KSI. "Complicated but clear, it is based on the previous coat of arms, but stands alone as a distinctive symbol of the Icelandic national team."

While the official coat of arms shows all four creatures, the ghosts can be used individually: “Modern brands have to be flexible and adaptable in a variety of ways. What makes the symbol even stronger is that the guardian spirits can stand alone to form a comprehensive framework, ”says KSI.

A decorative version of the typeface was inspired by Icelandic wood carvings

The logo is accompanied by a lower case lettering, which KSI describes as an "unmistakable mixture of old traditions and modern styles". With their sharp angles and unusual cuts, the letters offer a surprisingly contemporary interpretation of Icelandic handicrafts, and a decorative version is inspired by traditional wood carvings with letters in blocks.

Creating something that feels modern yet rooted in history is not an easy task, but Brandenburg has managed to create a bold identity that is not comparable to that of other football clubs. KSI has also released an epic video on the start of the rebrand, combining impressive shots of volcanoes, mountains and waves with archive news and illustrations from the famous protectors of Iceland and positioning the team as a powerful force. Further information on the project and pictures of the branding on site can be found on the KSI website.;