Former FA boss slams Premier dual sponsorship

Stephen Pearson, former commercial director of the FA Premier League, has attacked a possible dual sponsorship deal for the competition, branding it “unworkable”.

Pearson says the rumoured deal, in which domestic rights would stay with Carling and the global rights be handed to computer giant Siemens, means the FA Premier League would no longer have a “strong brand presence”.

Pearson, who set up sports marketing agency Sportacus last November, says: “If this deal goes ahead it will create a clutter of brands. The present situation is already a bit like a dog’s dinner.

“The official name is the FA Premier League, but it’s also known as the Carling Premiership.

“A third brand name will create more confusion. You could have a situation where people outside Europe think there are three separate competitions.”

Pearson believes there should be no headline sponsor of the Premier League, but commercial and sponsorship rights should be negotiated individually by its 20 clubs. He claims the fact that five or six clubs are sponsored by beer brands is creating problems.

“Inevitably, the beer brands’ will demand that teams not be allowed to promote any other beer brands at their grounds, even if Carling is the title sponsor,” he adds.

“What you are left with is blacked-out perimeter boards at various stadiums which are meant to be advertising the title sponsor of the competition.

“The clubs doing this are sticking two fingers up at the Premier League.”

Premier League commercial director Brian Philpotts says it is talking to two parties about an overall sponsorship package.

Philpotts adds: “Until a deal has been finalised we’re looking at all options.”

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