One of the most famous sporting clubs on the planet – Premier League team Chelsea – has parted ways with its shirt sponsor, adidas, six years before the contract was due to expire and has paid a staggering £40 million ($A78.5 million) to do it.
The German sports wear giant signed a shirt sponsorship deal in 2013 worth £30 million ($A58.8 million) a season to have its logo on Chelsea’s famed blue shirts up until 2023.
As if to prove the mega dollars on offer in the EPL, Chelsea decided they could get a much better deal elsewhere and decided to terminate its contract with adidas and fork out the huge termination fee in the process.
It’s believed Chelsea were none to happy when adidas signed a deal with arch-rivals Manchester United reported to be a staggering £75 million ($A147 million) a season. Almost twice that of the Chelsea deal.
The split between the two is reported to be amicable and the £40 million termination fee sure to help smooth things. A spokesperson for adidas told Sky Sports News HQ the decision was “in line with our strategic business plan where we will sponsor fewer teams in the coming years”.
It’s believed that many of the shirt sponsorship deals between EPL and European clubs are based on a team’s success. If the clubs aren’t one of the top teams and don’t win at home or when playing in Europe then sponsors have the right not to pay-up or substantially less.
Chelsea had a rather poor 2015/16 season finishing a dismal ninth and sacking its famous coach Jose Mourinho at Christmas. It has been speculated in the UK press that this also contributed to it parting ways with adidas.
Adidas will continue it’s sponsorship for one more year and, as yet, Chelsea have not confirmed a new short sponsor beyond that. Alongside Man Utd, adidas also sponsor the mega European clubs Real Madrid and Bayern Munich.