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Newcastle United’s new training kit sponsor – Sports Direct!

Posted on July 5th, 2012 | 47 Comments |

Steven Taylor and Derek Wright.
S.Taylor and Derek Wright displaying the new SD arm patches.
It seems that Newcastle United have somehow managed to pull off yet another sponsorship deal with sportwear giant, Sports Direct, this time for the club’s training kits.

This adds to the company’s existing sponsorship of St James’ Park stadium, the pitchside hoardings, the roof, the walls, the players’ tunnels, the dugouts, the Benton training ground, Kath the tea lady and so on.

The amount agreed for the latest “sponsorship” remains uncertain, but whatever it is, here’s hoping that it’s at least something. Despite finishing in the top five last season, qualifying for the Europa League, and reaching complete saturation in terms of sponsorship opportunities, Newcastle United still receives one of the lowest amounts in sponsorship revenue in the Premiership, and is currently £140 million in debt, the highest figure in it’s history.

It is also uncertain whether the new Sports Direct patches will be appearing on the club’s matchday kits in the coming season.

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NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1055 articles on this blog.

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47 Responses

  1. If Ashely wants to put Sports Direct on the stadium and training kits, fair enough, but please pay a specific known amount of money for each. Everyone can say oh he spent so many millions and gave out so many loans to NUFC so he has the right to do so. He does, but he is actually depriving the club of income on the basis that if someone else were to sponsor the training kit as well as the stadium then the club would get more money. We should be trying to sell the sponsorship rights to someone now since we are flying high and are in Europa we could get top dollar for that. I am just frustrated that the club isnt going that avenue and we are just free advertising for Ashley. Maybe if we get a few more million from that we would have more money available to us. Everything is tied to one another.

  2. wonder how long before newcastle sports direct united are playing in sports direct coloured stripes ?

  3. @Daverism

    We dont but you would think it would be announced if there was a deal even with sports direct. Also if the sponsorship is up for grabs there could be a few companies that actually try to bid for the naming rights, which would cause some sort of leak. We havent heard anything since the name change in the press of trying to find other sponsors for this year, and when we were changing the name, the press was all over it so you would think it would be the same if they were looking to sell the naming rights again since it is a big story.

  4. That’s all on assumptions really though isn’t it?

    Assuming that Ashley isn’t paying for it. Assuming that we even have anyone sniffing around for naming rights etc.

    In truth, given Ashley’s stance with the media, and this being an internal club matter as opposed to an actual footballing issue, I don’t suspect we’ll hear anything at all about it. Why would we?

    Who says Ashley isn’t just cutting out the middleman? Why would he go pay for TV adverts or some other form of advertising when he can just stick it on our shirts? I’d be really surpised if he wasn’t putting into the club on that basis mind, its been said numerous times that he wants the club to be self-sufficient, so denying advertising funds would just seem a bit illogical?

    Loads of hoo-hah about a bloody arm patch. haha.

  5. The thing with all the stadium sponsorship for Sports Direct though is I dont think it is really taking up space where other sponsors could advertise. The other sponsors are still all there as normal and the SD stuff is just crammed into spaces that previously were probably empty.

    Im guessing if companies were coming forward offering us money for additional sponsorship then we would happily do so in place of some of the SD stuff – if not then having ploughed so much money into the club then I think he is entitled to stick a few adverts up where he can.

    Same goes for the training kit – i am guessing nobody else has offered to sponsor it otherwise I am sure we would gladly take their money.

    I dont particularly like the stadium name change but all the other SD advertising doesnt bother me – every stadium in the country is plastered with adverts.

  6. @Daverism I do agree with you for the most part, in the end it is just assumptions, I am actually more concerned with the naming rights to the stadium I mean surely if the rights had been sold at a price then it would be announced or the information would come out somehow through the financial records of the club or the press.

    When you say:

    “In truth, given Ashley’s stance with the media, and this being an internal club matter as opposed to an actual footballing issue, I don’t suspect we’ll hear anything at all about it. Why would we?”

    I can understand that but there is no reason for it to be an internal matter. When we agreed to Puma we put out a press release so I dont understand why we wouldnt do it for our Stadium naming rights. Also it would actually benefit Ashley to say he is paying a fee from Sports Direct to NUFC for the naming rights, there is no way in the world that the news would be received negatively, it would actually be positive for Mike. One of the main issues from the naming rights fiasco was that it was not clear if we were getting any compensation, we said we would use it as a trial to attract other sponsors so it seemed like we werent getting paid that much if at all from SD. If they are in the process of selling the naming rights then fair enough, but if we go a whole other season and we still dont hear anything about it then I will be questioning what is going on with that situation even more.

  7. We do have a debt of around £140m, but its to mike ashley, unless he takes the kit sponsor he can put his company name anywhere he wants. The club would have been in admin, possibly wound up if mike ashley hadnt bought us.

  8. @SK, You’re right, there is no reason why it should be an internal matter. But it is, Evidently.

    I’m not privvy to how much sponsorship money Halifax or Virgin Atlantic made this year and I pay them a significant amount of money for their companies product.

    Why should NUFC be any different?

  9. @Daverism

    I am just worried it is an internal matter because we might not be getting that much or anything for it. I dont think that this would be an internal matter because when other teams sell the naming rights they dont keep that information private. Man City and the other big teams didnt when they sold the naming rights to their stadium. It also affects your spending because if you make more money you will be able to spend more due to the financial fair play rules. In the end, what we are saying now doesnt matter but I really hope that it is sorted out or will be sorted out soon. Only time will tell what is going to happen with that issue.

  10. I think the Man City naming rights were a wee bit different, considering it was 400m and you could actually purchase NUFC twice and then buy Ronaldo for that sort of money. That was a record breaking sum of money, so of course it was in the media.

    I do get why you’re concerned about it, but my point of view is, until that starts negatively affecting the footballing matters at NUFC, I don’t think we should be informed about it, or indeed worry about it.

    How far does it go, basically, is what I’m saying.. say we produce a document outlining how much sponsorship Ashley has paid into NUFC. Whats next? How many times has Ashley cheekily nicked a pie? I just don’t think its anything fans should worry themselves with. We don’t even see how much we actually signed a player for these days..

  11. @Daverism

    Thank you very much I am glad I am representing all my fellow Saudi NUFC fans in a good light :)

    Back to the discussion, Arsenal’s £100million, 15 year deal with Emirates was released which is around 6.7 million a year. Again that is a huge deal so we can look at smaller deals for instance we can look at the Liberty Stadium, the naming rights were sold to Liberty properties. There are some details here and some actual financial numbers:

    http://www.liberty-stadium.com/news_view.php?id=39

    They actually also sold the naming rights to one of their stands and published that the deal was worth £150,000 from the Welsh Government’s tourism agency Visit Wales.

    http://www.football-marketing.com/2011/08/18/swansea-city-football-club-sells-naming-rights/

    So even smaller deals are published. I guess the only reason I am concerned about it is my love for NUFC and I just want what is best for the club which is making the most money it can to get the best players we can get. I dont know what the effect is to be honest, if there is a negative effect or not, but I would think that selling it for the most we can positively affects NUFC, while getting an Ok deal or no deal at all with SD negatively affects NUFC beings that is lost money for the club, not necessarily the owner since he benefits from most sides. It seems like there is a bit of conflict of interest there so by publishing information, any misunderstandings can be justified. He is the owner of the club at the end of the day and can do what he wants I am just looking at it from an angle of what I believe most professional clubs should be doing things.

    I want to clarify that this is not a witch hunt or anything, I could care less about Ashley’s personal life tbh but it is common for clubs to publish that sort of information not just in football, but also NBA, NFL. Even here in Saudi all the numbers (how many years, how much) are detalied by the the club. Surly a press release about how much we made from sponsorships isnt more secret or important then the other numbers the club produce such as if we made or lost money. I am not saying give us all the info, but at least give us the big info if it relates to the club.

  12. I just reread my paragraph it didnt make that much sense, sorry about that here is its edited version:

    So even smaller deals are published. I guess the only reason I am concerned about the naming rights issue is my love for NUFC and I just want what is best for the club which is making the most money it can to get the best players we can get. I dont know if there is a negative effect or not with the issue of the naming rights, but I would think that selling the naming issues for the most we can positively affects NUFC, while getting an ok deal or no deal at all with Sports Direct negatively affects NUFC because that is lost money for the club. The owner benefits from most sides since he gets good publicity for his company. It seems like there is a bit of conflict of interest there so by publishing information, any misunderstandings can be clarified. He is the owner of the club at the end of the day and can do what he wants I am just looking at it from an angle of what I believe most professional clubs should be doing things.

    I want to clarify that this is not a witch hunt or anything, I could care less about Ashley’s personal life tbh but it is common for clubs to publish that sort of information not just in football, but also NBA, NFL. Even here in Saudi all the numbers (how many years, how much) are detalied by the the club. Surly a press release about how much we made from sponsorships isnt more secret or important then the other numbers the club produce such as if we made or lost money. I am not saying give us all the info, but at least give us the big info if it relates to the club.

  13. Saudi? Very nice! good to see some global-fan-action going on :)

    I’m with you mate, my point is simply this;

    We’re succeeding above all expectations at the minute, why do we need to worry about finances? I could understand if Ashley was coming out saying we’re not signing players as we’re skint, or we’re bumping season ticket prices up, or we’re going to start charging to use the loo.

    But he’s not, he’s trimming fat, saving money everywhere, even down to light bulbs and push taps!

    Would seem a bit of a backwards step, to save all that money then neglect a perfectly viable revenue stream, I guess what I mean is, its highly unlikely that he’s paying £0 to advertise on our shirts.

    As for the numbers the clubs produce as to profits/loss, these are annual financial reports, which are produced by all businesses and are (I believe) open to the public.

    I by no means thought of this as a witch hunt dude, you’re a fan with an opinion and I’m a fan with a differing opinion. This is what blogs ‘n that are for :)

  14. I don’t see what the problem is.

    Mike Ashley owns the club and therefore it is his right to invite whoever he wants to advertise their products and services on his property and to charge them or not.

    As a householder it is up to me whether I want to charge a lodger for using one of my bedrooms. It’s only me who loses out.

    There is an assumption that money paid by organisations for advertising would go to the club for the purpose of (say) recruitment, wages, academy etc but it could equally go to paying off the loan to Mike Ashley.

    I believe that Mike Ashley is the sole creditor of Newcastle United and as such has a very legitimate right to be paid all or some of the profits generated by the club. The fact that he doesn’t should be applauded.

    Looking at it differently. If I was an employee, share holder of Sports Direct (or an insurance pension fund holding SD shares) I would be delighted that the company gets all this advertising for free, thereby reducing its costs and increasing its profits, dividends and bonuses.

  15. Kamar says:
    July 5, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    “I believe that Mike Ashley is the sole creditor of Newcastle United and as such has a very legitimate right to be paid all or some of the profits generated by the club. The fact that he doesn’t should be applauded.”

    But he will be paid by the club one way or another, Kamar. He shouldn’t be applauded for burdening it with a £140 million debt to pay off his own inherited debts. It may be standard business practice, but his arguments that he deserves to be applauded by the fans for it is pure sophistry, and dishonest and arrogant beyond belief. It is little different from the Glazers saddling Manchester United with one of the biggest debts ever in football to finance their own purchase of the club.

  16. Kamar

    its ok sitting on the fence mate.

    we all understand what is happening and what Mike is doing.

    but personlay this is nothing short of pilfering.

    yes it is entirely up to mike to do what ever he likes to NUFC, but if you look at the finances of Sports Direct when we were relegated the profits were down, now is advertisements are everywhere profits are up.

    so yes he can do what ever he wants, but he or lamearse cant say “that Mike has clear the debt and mike has paid £250 million of his own cash”

    fair enough he paid the £140 million debt we had, but that is issues he had with the way he runs his business, anyone will see the guy has problems with owing people. he deals in cash like a dodgey back alley boy.

    but what did he expect? did expect to get Newcastle United for free? it is his own fault he didnt do due dillegence.

    it is his own fault for being out of pocket, not ours, the fans.

    we have had to sit and watch as he tears down every piece of heritage St. James Park had.

    imagine the fuss if someone torn the sign down from Alnwick Castle and renamed it? there would be rich toffs all over the country hooing and harring.

    but because us working men have an issue then its ok.
    we dont count.

    yes everyone at SD will be loving this, millions of ££££ worth of free advertising(free being £14,000 per year)
    and profits are sky rocketing.

    so let us not forget that yes we are in Europe, yes we finished 5th last season, but some of us resent having ASDA scream at us. to some this is a step too far.

    i will attend to support Newcastle United.
    and i will buy cheap shoes.
    but i wont like it.
    and that is my right.

  17. Stephen C says:
    July 5, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    “fair enough he paid the £140 million debt we had”

    But he didn’t “pay” it Stephen, he merely transferred it into a debt to himself to save on the interest. Either the club or the next purchaser of the club will have to pay it. Besides, the debt has actually grown since he took over the club and the club has to pay that back to him as well, even though it is the result of his and Derek Llambias’s own mismanagement in getting the club relegated and not capitalising on potential commercial revenue by giving away all the sponsorship to his other business interest for free. Most people just don’t seem to get it, alas.

  18. And besides that, Ashley has also damaged the club’s merchandising revenue by undercutting the club’s own shop (and other retailers) by around 20% on replica shirts, with the club itself being used to promote the company which is undercutting it for free. It’s a joke. :lol:

  19. i know worky.

    as far as business is concerned we arent gaining anything from the ASDA logos.

    i think we all get the message about what is on offer to potential investors so we might as well go back to St. James Park and stop wasting our time.

    i mean what on earth would mike do with all the free advertising?

    i mean its not like his business is making £30 million quid a year since he plastered his tripe all over.

    oh wait… he is…..

    better forget that sjp return then.

  20. worky…….

    Ashley thinks we are idiots……

    we are not…..

    but unfortunately Ashley knows we are skint and selling cheap shite works…

    until we are as rich as him and can spare a few quid.

    we might as well kiss his arse and eat his dirt. because that is all we will be able to reach for.

  21. More anti Ashley crap from the worst toon blogger ever! if it wasn’t for Ashely saveing us we wouldnt exist so he can call the studium whatever he wants as far as im concerned. That’s the reality of buisness now so you might as well just shut up and get used to it!

  22. More of the usual anti Ashley crap form the worst toon blogger ever! if we werent saved by Ashley this club wouldn’t exist, it’s the reality of business now thats a FACT!!! It wont stop wingers like you who are always trying to bring the club down with your stupid rambleings though. Its time everyone stop winging and got behind the team for a change. Ashley understands business and knows what he is doing and we don’t so we should all be praising Ashley for saveing this club so just SHUT UP AND SUPPORT THE TEAM OR FCK OFF!

  23. ChasNUFC says:
    July 5, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    “WHY ARE MY COMMENTS NOT GOING THROUGH!!!!!”

    Because your first comment contained an “f” word Chas, and was filtered into the moderation queue. That’s not to mention all the other abuse!

    Calm down dear! :-)

  24. Chas

    we all know Mike is doing a good job with finances.

    but i very much doubt we would have went bust, went into administration or liquidation if mike hadn’t have taken over.

    dont believe the propaganda that the upper echelons of SJP speil.

    yes i support the toon, always have done. but if you joing a group called “St. James Park, Always Has been Always will be” you will understand the passion that us true geordie feel for our Chapel on the hill.

    if 5th in the league and a europa league position is good enough for you.

    Then Fck off and join the happy brigade, that are happy with one season. two or three season time it might be all over and people like you will be quick to lash out at Mike like people like you did when we were relegated.

    anyway the wind blows ay Chas.

    im loyal im not easily bought.

    im not anti-Ashley im not being paid to be pro Ashley like some.

    i just see through the spiel that we get fed.

  25. Worky can you give me a text mate my phone was fried during the storms so im trying to recall all my contacts.

  26. I will say this once again… do you not understand that Ashley understands that he is making money from NUFC free advertising and if it comes into Sports Direct then all the better.

    He has the Sports Direct tat, but it is a brand nevertheless and he has Newcastle United/NUFC, another brand. Saint James’ Park is not one of his brands so he could not care less.

    Saint James’ Park is not NUFC, so don’t equate the two.

  27. Worky, regarding what you and Stephen C. said from the last article.

    I enjoy reading your stuff. Even the long threads when I don’t read it in one go, and then go back.

    Hopefully, when the season starts the other writers will come back. UTD111 was on the other day and I always liked what he wrote. Too busy fishing?

  28. GS
    Saint James’ Park is not NUFC, so don’t equate the two.

    GS St. James Park is the life blood that is NUFC. they go hand in hand.

    and dont be fooled for five minutes to think if he could get away with it, he would change everything about NUFC.

    i can not believe people are actually trying to make excuses for Mike and his SD empire.

    yes we finished 5th and yes we are in Europe.

    but the name change is and was unnecessary and the day the ground becomes anything other than St. James Park or ASDA then i will most certainly eat my words.

    let us not forgive and forget too soon, one season in how many? and we hail him the answer? yes he might be, but im certainly not going to proclaim him until he has firmly put us back where we long to be.

    1 season in 4 is that really good enough to give way on all issues?

    but i will sit and wait until the close of the transfer window to see where we stand. and if im proved wrong i will be the first to say so.

    but when he has had just as many good season that he managed to taint then i will give him credit.

    why? because i for one want to be proud of what he has done.

    why?

    because i like cheap shoes too.

  29. GS says:
    July 5, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    “Ashley understands that he is making money from NUFC free advertising”

    So are many other Sports Direct shareholders too, GS, Ashley only holds a 71% shareholding in SD. Though the renaming 29% may not seem like that much, 29% of SDI PLC is currently worth more than the whole of Newcastle United whilst the club carrying it’s current debt and many others are making a packet through NUFC too.

    As for Chas, leave it, leave it, ‘e ain’t wurf it!

  30. GS.
    says

    Worky, regarding what you and Stephen C. said from the last article.

    Worky im becoming a key part of the blog….
    does that mean i get an appearance fee?

    just give me what Danny Simpson is on…..
    if its true what they say you wont be out of pocket by much

  31. This £140mill debt NUFC supposedly owe Ashley should b squashed.the amount ov profit SD has made off our clubs free advertising is huge.so is Ashley ignoring all offers ov cash for advertising just so he can make loads more cash by getting the SD name out there even more so this season wiv europe on the horizon?i for one wouldnt put owt past the fat controller and his bent cronies..
    On another front,you’ve got no idea how happy i am that chas the losers comments arnt getting thru.take the hint Ashleys secret love child and jog on.

  32. Is there any way to separate the football and the corporate shite anymore? Look at Rangers!

    I think I would rather give 29% to SD ahareholders than 100% to the Scottish 2nd division.

  33. but GS at least the new owners of Rangers aren’t changing the name of its Home.

    and the answer to your question.

    is there any way to separate ?

    no…. because Mike has over stepped the mark.
    he was the one who mixed the two. and for ever more we will question that decision.

    and jak72 a guy who speaks sense

  34. i’ve never been on here for ages, but low and behold, another debate on the merits of “slimboy fat, or fatboy slim”.
    people are off their bin, if they dont think the man is using this football club, to showcase his schmat business.
    yes they punched well above their weight last term, but lets see what he does this summer.
    they are now a european club once more, but they can forget about cut price deals now.
    in reality the prices for players for a european club, will be premium.
    the days of picking up a cheik tiote for a song, will not happen now.
    so therein lies the challenge for them, they took the plaudits last season, with their fiscal strategy.
    they could now become a victim of the way they do things, we’re already starting to see them revert back to the way used to operate, where they are backing away from deals, and quibbling over prices.
    time will tell i suppose, but we are now getting back to the bringing in of a few kids, for next to nowt.
    i just hope he doesn’t do the mike ashley of old, and think he can rest on his laurels, and proceeds to just prop up what he’s got.

  35. This miserable blog will warp your mind, only check it when bored and all you go on about is Ashley and negativity, I hate to go the match with you half time booers

  36. Chas you gone for a name change?

    Gordie is that short for makem in disguise or just geordie spelled wrong?

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