The Sunday Telegraph is reporting that the finance company Wonga will sponsor Newcastle United from next season, and their emblem will be on the shirts, and the surprising thing is that the report says they will sponsor both the shirts and also buy the naming rights to the club’s stadium St. James’ Park – in a deal believed to be worth around £8M a year.
For both the shirts and the stadium that figure seems ridiculously low to us, and we’d be surprised if the stadium’s naming rights have been sold for such a small price, although it will get Sports Direct off the TV screens a bit – and we suppose that has got to be good.
Derek LLambias has always said the target price for selling the naming rights to St. James’ Park alone was around £10M a year, and given it’s a very unpopular move to the fans, the club had better get good money for it.
If the Telegraph had quoted say £18M a year then that would be a decent deal for Newcastle, for both the naming rights and the shirt sponsorship - but not for £8M.
Virgin Money’s contract with Newcastle was cancelled last week, and it will now run only through the end of this season, and the two year deal has been widely quoted at £10M a year, so where the Telegraph gets £8M from – that is supposed to include the naming rights – we have no idea.
The Telegraph is reporting the deal is not yet complete and nothing has yet been signed, but negotiations are ongoing and expected to complete within a few days.
And the stadium will be renamed Wonga – the Wonga Stadium – Wonda Park – Wonda Arena – they all sound awful to us – to say the least – we’ll keep calling it by it’s correct name – St. James’ Park – as always.
Wonga filed detailed accounts for the year ended December 2011 at Companies House, and they have cash on hand of around £135M at the end of last year.
We cannot believe Wonga will get a double deal for £8M a year – and even the shirt deal if £8M – is not a good deal for Newcastle.
What do you think?
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