adidas, with an eye to a rather big upcoming event in Brazil, knows that skateboarders aren't completely immune to the thrills of other sports. In fact, a few might be considered fanatics. Well, at least if soccer is concerned.

To that end, Skate Copa is adidas' way of telling a skateboard story through football style. Six of the team's most colorful riders have designed jersey that represent their country and deck sponsor. The Skate Copa jersey collection includes Lucas Puig with Cliché for France, Mark Gonzales with Krooked for the USA, Raul Navarro with Western Edition for Spain, Rodrigo TX with DGK for Brazil, and Lem Villemin with Cliché for Germany. Then, representing England, there is street skater Benny Fairfax.

Amongst the group, London-based Fairfax stands out. Most obviously, he's the only skater to have gone with a long sleeve shirt (classic), honoring England's '66 Cup winning side. It's even rendered in the same plaited cotton jersey fabric. Additionally, he represents the mighty Palace, a skate brand with massive crossover appeal.

Complex caught up with Fairfax to test his knowledge of English football and let him talk some shit about his fellow adidas teammates.

For those that don't know, how long have you been with adidas? How did the relationship start?
Since about 2006. Bryce Kanights was was the team manager at that time and I got in contact with him through Chris Pastras [the founder of Stereo Skateboards].

How about Palace? You are relatively new to the team but it seems like a natural fit.
I always knew I was going ride for Palace, all the guys involved are my oldest friends from London, it was just a matter of time really.
 

 

I think that they are quite different, football being a very organized team sport and skateboarding being completely without rules and very much about creativity and expression. But , I do think both involve a lot of passion.

 

What about football? Who do you support?
Chelsea and England.

Did you play as a kid?
I was all about footy as a kid until i found skateboarding.

Have you ever cried like Gazza did in '90 after missing a trick?
I don't think so. I've probably cried from taking a hard slam when I was a nipper.

Your shirt has a bit of '66—the year England won the World Cup—vibe to it. How many older people in your family have told you about Bobby Moore?
My family aren't your typical die hard footy fans, so I never really got those football history lessons that a lot of kids in England get.



Long sleeves, the number 7…hard not to think of Beckham. Did Becks ever influence your style? What do you think his greatest legacy to British hairstyles is?
Not really, i've always admired him as a great player and stuff but I'm not a United fan. I was never really that into him, and I don't know about the haircut thing..

Tell me a little about the design process of the your shirt. What were things you absolutely wanted to include?
There had been a few remakes of England footy shirts from skate companies fairly recently. They had already used the obvious ones, so i just wanted to switch it up and the '66 shirt seemed like the way to go.. plus i like long sleeves.

Lucas' shirt is numbered 10. Do you think he has a bit of Zidane's temper?
Yes, for sure! i've seen him lose his shit skating before.. but that's the price you pay to be the best I guess!

Rodrigo also wears 10. Bit presumptuous to proclaim "I am a lot like Pele!" don't you think?
[Laughs] Well, him and Pele are two pretty legendary Brazilians in my book!

Do you reckon Gonz can play football at all?
Yep, I've witnessed it! We had a banging 5-a-side game in Berlin and he's actually got skills.

Generally, how does football influence skate?
I think that they are quite different, football being a very organized team sport and skateboarding being completely without rules and very much about creativity and expression. But , I do think both involve a lot of passion.

What are your favorite skate spots in London?
Southbank, of course! Also loved the Shell centre, R.I.P.

What would be your ideal tournament song?
"Vindaloo," by Fat Les.

Buy Benny's jersey here, $50.