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Manchester United pay price

The effects of poor performance (by their standards) on the pitch are being felt by Manchester United.   Revenue and profits are expected to fall in 2015 in the absence of Champions League income.  Even so, the club's revenues and earnings are still far in excess of Premier League rivals.

Big variation in kit sponsorship revenues

Sports Direct have produced an interesting set of graphics which show just how big the variation is in the value of Premier League kit sponsorships (although five clubs have managed to keep the details quiet).   They also provide information on European and international kit deals.

Finding a league sponsor

It's not so easy to find someone to sponsor a league, especially in the non-league system.   The returns are more diffuse than sponsoring a club.   Local businesses are often willing to support a non-league club.  One of their directors may also serve on the club board or their employees may play for the club.

Financial fair play scores own goal

We have long argued that financial fair play could have unintended and perverse consequences.  This view is supported by the latest authoritative annual survey of football by accountancy firm BDO.  The survey found that few clubs thought the rules were having the desired effect.

It's the Vanarama Conference

The Football Conference have announced Vanarama as title sponsor for the 2014/15 season.  The partnership was launched today in the presence of member clubs and will see the commercial vehicle specialists take the naming rights for all 1,476 games a season across the three divisions in 2014/15.

Shirt sponsor deals increase in value

Shirt sponsorship deals in the Premier League have increased to a record £191m in 2014-15.  For example, Hull City recently concluded a deal with 12BETuk which is worth a seven figure sum and is the largest in the club's history.

However, only six clubs have deals worth more than £10m and the other fourteen clubs have raised a combined sum that is less than that of Manchester United.   Placed in the context of overall Premier Legaue revenues, the global sum is a relatively small one, although still a valuable source of revenue.

Van Gaal questions United's commercial size

New Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal has suggested that 'Maybe it is too big a club - not only in a sporting sense, but also commercially.  We have to do a lot of things that, normally, I don't allow.'

United seal adidas deal

With the completion of their 10-year £750m kit deal with adidas, Manchester United stand to earn about £143m annually from their three main commercial deals.   The other two are with Chevolet, who are paying £357m over seven years to sponsor the club's shirts and Aon, whose sponsorship of the club's shirts and Carrington training base is worth £136m over eight years.

Nike quit at United

Adidas is expected to sign a 10-year deal to supply Manchester United's kit that could be worth up to £750m after rival Nike declined to match the German company's offer.   It is likely to be the biggest deal in football and worth more than double that Real Madrid has with the company.

Prolonged talks between Nike and United to extend the 13-year kit deal ended with a statement from the US company saying the terms on offer 'did not represent good value for Nike's shareholders' and that its relationship would end after next season.

Ambush marketing at the World Cup

In some ways the biggest commercial winners from the World Cup may be those brands that are not official sponsors. Fifa partners were wrong footed by widespread protests over the cost of staging the competition in Brazil, although these died away once the competition started and Brazil progressed. However, it is difficult to stage and manage campaigns in countries experiencing deep social tensions and transformations.