Grace Kelly, AS Monaco and the story of the iconic ‘Diagonale’

grace kelly as monaco

A new AS Monaco home jersey is released every year, and whilst the Principality club’s kit has evolved over the decades, there is one constant – ‘La Diagonale’. 

Les Rouges et Blanc have always been just that: red and white. The Principality’s football club, since its creation in November 1924, has always worn the colours of the country’s flag.

However, up until 1960, AS Monaco always wore a striped shirt. The club rose to prominence in the 1950s, gracing the French top flight for the first time in the 1953-54 season.

grace kelly as monaco
Monaco’s 1960 Coupe de France-winning squad. Photo source: AS Monaco

A historic achievement in 1960 would then change the styling of the club irreversibly. Monaco won their first Coupe de France in 1960, and to celebrate Les Monégasques’  triumph, Princess Grace Kelly, the wife of Prince Rainier III, designed the club’s jersey for the 1960/61 season.

Monaco crowned in ‘La Diagonale’

Based on the Monegasque flag, the now-famous diagonal, which extended from the right shoulder to the left hip, was incorporated into the design. This kit would soon become emblematic, not just for its uniqueness, but also because of Monaco’s exploits on the pitch that same season.

grace kelly as monaco
Grace Kelly meets Monaco’s 1963 Cup and League double-winning squad. Photo source: AS Monaco

Les Monégasques were crowned champions for the first time in 1961, and thereafter the La Diagonale was eternally adopted. Whilst the kit providers, from Le Coq Sportif to Kappa, have multiplied over the years, Grace Kelly’s influence has not waned.

The shape has instead become a central pillar of the club’s identity and a defining and unique aspect of their appearance. The La Diagonale is even trademarked, and when Stade Brestois and their kit provider Nike brought out a jersey mimicking Grace Kelly’s design in 2012, the LFP ordered the Breton club to alter their design.

grace kelly as monaco
Prince Rainier III, Princess Grace and their two oldest children, Prince Albert II and Princess Caroline, with the Monaco squad in 1963. Photo source: AS Monaco

AS Monaco puts its academy at the heart of the project, and it is therefore fitting that it is named La Diagonale.

Grace Kelly left an eternal mark on the Principality club and undoubtedly helped forge its identity.


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Photo source: AS Monaco