English soccer’s Football Association (FA) has ended its long search for a new headline sponsor by announcing a five-year deal with telecommunications giant BT.
The agreement has been widely reported by UK media to be valued at UK£10 million (US$12.7 million) a year, although The Times newspaper says the contract is worth closer to a total UK£60 million (US$76.1 million).
Either way, BT’s commitment is significantly more than previous sponsor Vauxhall, which paid the FA an annual UK£6 million (US$7.6 million) before announcing in 2017 that it would not be renewing the partnership.
The new deal will see England’s men’s and women’s senior national soccer teams sport the BT logo on their training kit for the first time this summer during their respective appearances in the UEFA Nations League and FIFA Women’s World Cup, which gets underway in France later this week.
An official release added that the partnership, which covers all 28 England national soccer teams, including the development sides, futsal and disability teams, will lead to soccer clubs in communities receiving more support.
“This is a great start to an exciting week for England football, with the Lionesses starting their World Cup campaign and the men’s senior team in the finals of the Nations League,” said Mark Bullingham, the FA’s chief commercial and football development officer.
As part of the deal, mobile network operator EE, which is owned by BT, will remain the principal sponsor of Wembley Stadium, where England play their home games.
Bullingham, who is replacing Martin Glenn as the FA’s chief executive next month, added: “We look forward to working with BT and EE over the coming five years, continuing our commitment to developing the game and bringing our fans and teams closer together.”
BT is the latest sponsor to team up with the FA this year, following deals for the governing body with health and beauty retailer Boots and investment bank Barclays, which in March became the first ever title sponsor of the Women’s Super League.
Source: SoccerexPro News