Barca & Qatar team up in £125M deal
BARCELONA are the undisputed brand leader of world football after landing a £125MILLION shirt deal.
The five-year contract with Qatar Foundation is the biggest sponsorship in the game’s history – even leaving Manchester United in the shade.
It ends the Catalan giants’ long-term stance of refusing commercial shirt sponsorship – having PAID to carry the Unicef logo on the front of their strips.
Barcelona – £370m in debt – need funds to boost the coffers and Unicef will now share shirt space with the new backers.
Qatar Foundation is a non-profit body that deals mostly with education projects in the Middle East.
United bank a cool £19.5m a year from shirt sponsors AON, the same amount that Standard Chartered pay Liverpool.
Other big earners from shirt deals include Real Madrid, who net £19.3m a year from Bwin, Bayern Munich, who bag £18.4m from Deutsche Telekom, and Chelsea, who have a £13.6m deal with Samsung.
Barca’s windfall could free up some funds for coach Pep Guardiola to bring in fresh faces to play alongside Lionel Messi and Co.
Club vice-president Javier Faus said: “Barca are now the brand leader in world football, far ahead of international rivals.”