Newcastle United are reportedly in advanced talks over a new shirt sponsor for next season
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Newcastle United could have a new shirt sponsor next season following reports the club are in advanced talks with an events company from Saudi Arabia.
Eddie Howe’s side have enjoyed a resurgence on the pitch this season, securing a top four finish and Champions League football for the first time in 20 years following a goalless stalemate with strugglers Leicester City on Monday.
The Magpies were runners-up in the Carabao Cup this term and could finish as high as third in the Premier League having lost just five league fixtures all season with an enviable defensive record. Only champions Manchester City have lost fewer games.
Off it, however, the club has been the subject of heavy criticism in recent years following a £305m takeover by the Saudi Public Investment Fund in 2021, which drew protests from other top-flight clubs due to purported links to the Saudi Arabian government and the significant financial firepower that brings.
A report from Sky News now indicates that Newcastle are in advanced talks with Sela, a Saudi-based events company that operates in several countries and has organised other sporting events.
The company claims to be the first athlete representation group from Saudi to be recognised by FIFA, following Sela’s inception in 1995.
It already has ties to the Saudi men’s national team, who sent shock waves around the world by beating eventual winners Argentina in their opening game of the 2022 World Cup.
The reported deal with Newcastle, were it to go through, would make Sela the club’s biggest commercial partner and therefore replace gambling company Fun88 as the main sponsor. The value of the deal, according to Daily Mail reporter Craig Hope, is believed to be £30m.
🚨 NUFC in advanced talks with Saudi events company Sela over deal worth around £30m to become club’s main shirt sponsor— Craig Hope (@CraigHope_DM) May 24, 2023
✔️ Value of package (tbc) is unlikely to contravene Premier League’s rules on third-party-related commercial dealshttps://t.co/3qKxlsnsWn
If successful, Newcastle could announce the deal during the off-season, in time for new replica kits to be produced in time for the next campaign.
However, the Premier League's latest rulebook stipulates that third-party-related commercial deals must be at 'fair market value' with an assessment undertaken by an independent third party.
So while the deal cannot be stopped, the Magpies could, in theory, be forced to renegotiate if it is deemed to give the club an unfair financial advantage. Although, according to Hope, that seems unlikely.
Howe’s men finish their season with a trip to Chelsea on Sunday.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
Topics: Newcastle United, Premier League, Champions League, Eddie Howe