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Football sponsorship is a controversial topic due to their ties to gambling companies, but most football clubs worldwide have contracts with companies for shirt sponsorship. Some of these shirt sponsorships were struck to promote well-known companies, but there are some weird sponsorships that don’t make sense. Read all about them here.
Wet Wet Wet are a rock band formed in 1982 in Clydebank, Scotland. The band is best known for their cover of ‘Love Is All Around’, which was used on the soundtrack. Four weddings and a funeral. However, the group raised eyebrows in 1995 when they became shirt sponsors of their hometown football club. While it is not unusual for the group to sponsor their hometown football club, it was strange to see the band’s name on the kits and it is rare to see a rock band or a musician sponsoring a football club. In the early 2000s, the football club was bought and moved to Airdrie, where it was renamed Airdrie United, replacing the city’s previous club.
Angry Birds One of the biggest mobile games of all time. Nevertheless, parent company Rovio signed a sponsorship deal with Everton in 2017 Angry Birds Logo on the left sleeve of the football club shirt. Reports claimed the sponsorship was worth more than £1 million per season, but the deal between the club and Rovio fell apart when talks over an extension into 2020 broke down. The club’s primary sponsor from 2020 was British online car retailer Cazoo.
In 2009, Spanish club Getafe struck a deal with fast-food chain Burger King for the company’s famous branding to appear on the club’s shirts for the 2009/10 season. The shirt features the Burger King logo on the front and the company has also added an image of King to the inside of the club’s football shirt. The deal is considered one of the worst and weirdest football shirt sponsorships of all time for several reasons. Firstly, Burger King is big enough not to need to sponsor football clubs, the design was terrible and professional footballers promoting fast food wasn’t right. Getafe displayed Burger King’s branding for three years before the club struck a deal with Confremer, a frozen food manufacturer.
In 2003, Atlético Madrid signed a sponsorship deal with Columbia Pictures, a film production and distribution company. Instead of displaying the Columbia Pictures logo, the sponsorship saw Atlético Madrid change their shirt logo several times to promote Columbia Pictures’ new film release. Some of the logos featured on team shirts include: Spider-Man, Peter Pan, Hell Boy, Resident Evil, White Chicks, Bad Boys, and many others. The sponsorship was incredibly unique, but the deal ended in 2005.
As you can see, all the weird football sponsorships we mentioned above were agreed before the start of 2020. Today, most football clubs are sponsored by casinos and their popular sister site, especially in the UK. This has caused a huge backlash across the country as many believe that this sponsorship pushes the youth and vulnerable people into gambling. Similarly, the casino industry has seen several pro athletes launch custom branded slots. Armadillo’s slot title “The Lioness” features Brazilian Amanda Nunes, the greatest female MMA fighter of all time, in her own online slot game. A review of the Gambling Act 2005 could see the UK government ban gambling shirt sponsorships, which means we could see fewer gambling brands and the odd sponsorships we mentioned above. Wouldn’t that be fun?
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