LUTON car manufacturer Vauxhall has announced a multi-million pound sponsorship deal with the England football team.
The three-and-a-half year deal will see the motoring giant sponsor not only the main England side, but the nation’s 23 other representative teams including the women’s team, men’s youth sides and disabled XI.
The agreement runs from January 1 to July 31 2014, encompassing the 2012 European Championships in Poland and Ukraine and the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
Reports suggest that Vauxhall, whose UK manufacturing base is in Osborne Road, will announce further deals to sponsor Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales in the coming days, with rumours rife that company bosses are keen to revive the Home International Championship between the four UK nations, which was scrapped back in 1984.
Announcing the partnership at Wembley Stadium yesterday, Vauxhall Managing Director Duncan Aldred said: “This is an historic day for Vauxhall. To become the lead partner of the England team is a great honour for us.
“We are delighted to be partnering The FA and hope to be a driving force behind the further development and activation of an expansive grass roots football strategy encompassing the whole of the country.
“We have a strong heritage in supporting football including official sponsorship of the highly successful UEFA Euro ’96 Championship in England.
“Football and cars are two of our nation’s biggest passions and this partnership is a clear and unequivocal sign that Vauxhall is firmly behind not only a successful England senior team but is also committed to supporting grass roots initiatives covering youth and junior football as well as women’s football and disability football.”
Vauxhall will also become the official car supplier to the Football Association under the agreement.
England Manager Fabio Capello said: “I’m very happy that Vauxhall are the new team sponsor.
“Vauxhall is a strong company and it is good for everyone at The FA and all the England teams that we have such a strong commercial partner.
“To achieve your goals in football you need as much support as possible and it is very important for us all that Vauxhall have provided this strong commitment.
“We will do all we can to reward Vauxhall for their support and this begins with our first objective of this new year; to qualify for Euro 2012.”