Emirates said to eye Real Madrid sponsorship

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Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid CF holds up the La Liga trophy as he celebrates winning the La Liga title with team-mates. (Getty Images)

Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid CF holds up the La Liga trophy as he celebrates winning the La Liga title with team-mates. (Getty Images)

Dubai’s Emirates Airline will pay up to 26m euros ($34m) per year to become the new shirt sponsor of Spanish football giants Real Madrid, according to a report in Spain.

Football newspaper Marca said that the carrier, the world’s largest by international passenger traffic, will sign a four-year deal with the planet’s richest football club on April 30, with sponsorship starting from next season. The newspaper did not say where it got the information.

As a result the Emirates logo will appear on Real Madrid’s players’ shirts as the main sponsor, with current partner Bwin relegated to secondary sponsor status.

Emirates currently has an existing relationship with the current La Liga Champions and Champions League semi-finalists, which sees the Dubai airline’s branding appear in stadium Santiago Bernabeu, as well as other global promotional and hospitality rights.

If the deal goes through, it will become one of the most expensive sponsorship packages in football history.

Qatar Foundation currently pays close to $40m every year to sponsor fellow Spanish giants Barcelona although their logo will be replaced by Qatar Airways from next season. German side Bayern Munich receives about $35m annually from its deal with Deutsche Telekom, while Manchester United’s agreement with insurer Aon is worth $30m every year.

Emirates has deals in place with a number of Europe’s top sporting clubs, including English Premier League side Arsenal, whose shirts and stadium the airline’s branding appears on. The airline also sponsorship arrangements with Qatar-owned Paris St Germain and Hamburger SV.

Emirates Airline said it did not comment on speculation when contacted for commented by Arabian Business.

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