Monday, March 12, 2012


Seeing Real Murcia with a blank shirt, free of sponsorship, for the first time I can remember, is surely a drain on the already stressed finances of the club. But we are far from alone in this plight. Between Primera and Segunda I can count no less that 8 sides with no official sponsor (9 if you count Vilarreal B) : Vilarreal, Sevilla, Atletico Madrid, Rayo Vallecano, Osasuna, Valladolid, Sabadell and Real Murcia. You can almost certainly add Cartagena to this list as they carry their owner’s wine business on their shirt.

Of the sides with sponsorship, there is a very noticeable chunk of public money, with Hercules, Elche, Las Palmas, Alcoyano, Nastic Tarragona, Sporting Gijón, Real Sociedad, and Levante all carrying publicity for their city or region. Alcorcón could also fall into this category as they advertise a public service (012 – the Spanish equivalent of 999). You also have to question if public money, subventions, are behind the 2 sides who have solar power companies as sponsors (Valencia and Numancia), and UNESCO’s sponsorship of Malaga. I also find a bit murky the Qatar Foundation’s massive cash deal to have their awful logo emblazoned on Barcelona and Barcelona B’s strip. Surely the money would have been better spent on the good things the foundation say they do? Zaragoza are another with a “foundation” behind them – Proniño.

At face value you have 4 sides with Savings Banks as their backers – however Cajasol (Recreativo and Xerez) state on their website that they are a “Private credit entity of foundational nature and of social character, non-profit”, so not a business per-se, so more than likely again public money finding it’s way onto a shirt in a roundabout way. Caja Guadalajara (Guadalajara) I find is also part of Cajasol. Caja Granada (Granada) I can’t find too much information on.

This leaves the sides who have real bona fide sponsors – companies ready to splash the cash, and just 12 of the 42 participants can boast such backing. Of these 5 are from the food and drinks sector : Deportivo (Estrella Galicia), Girona (Flor del Café), Getafe (Burger King), Almería (Urcisol) and Racing Santander (Palacios). Just one with tourism (Espanyol - Cancun), one for oil (Bilbao - Petronor), 1 for a retailer (Cordoba – La Oportunidad), one for the car sector (Celta - Citroen), and one for a online real estate broker (Huesca – Caja3). This leaves 3 (Real Madrid, Mallorca and Betis), all sponsored by betting / casino sites. Strange that gambling enterprises should have spare cash to spend on shirt sponsorship, as all gamblers I know seem to brag at how they make money!

So really the majority of the sponsorship money there is comes from Joe public’s tax he’s paid, or from his taxed income that he foolishly spends gambling.
For comparison I’ve looked at the English leagues (Premier League and Championship). All clubs have a sponsor. Only one with possible public funding (Blackburn – The Prince’s Trust). Of 44 sides I can see many with financial sector sponsors (mostly insurance), 4 with airlines, various online businesses, retailers, electronics and beers. But again, rather worryingly, no less than 11 sides sponsored by online betting and gaming sites.

What is telling though, is that if you looked at the state of sponsorship a decade ago, you would have seen a lot of building and construction firms, plush beachside developments or golfing resorts. All gone, not a single one remains.

Photos : Top - Now. Bottom - Then.

1 comment:

  1. Who did sponsor us before? and did they stop through lack of money. I guess that's the same all over Spain due to the economy. I know Cajamurcia was on the shirt, as I chose them to open an account in Spain with! - and then they stopped sponsoring us! We could even get our holiday home advertised on there at this rate.