Today the media has a very keen interest in the sporting world, more than it’s ever done before. Many athletes have been ‘elevated’ to the role of celebrity and are viewed by many as important role models. However, the media can also twist the truth or be influenced by political situations.

Corporations are also very interested in getting a piece of the action and more and more sporting events and even sportspeople are getting sponsorship deals.

Sponsorship in sport

Sponsorship is very popular and within the sporting world it’s very easy to spot. Competitions can be sponsored:

      • Heineken Cup (rugby)
      • Barclay’s Premier League (football)
      • Npower Test Series (cricket )

Stadiums can be sponsored:

      • Pizza Hut Park
      • Red Bull Arena
      • Tetley’s Stadium

Many clubs and teams are sponsored:

      • England Women’s Team (Vodafone)
      • UK Athletics (Norwich Union)
      • England Rugby Union Team (O2)

It’s no longer legal for cigarette companies to provide sponsorships due to the health implications of smoking. In terms of alcohol, which also carries health risks, this is down to sports governing bodies to decide.

If a sporting event gets a lot of media attention then it’s much more likely to entice a company or corporation to provide sponsorship. So, the more high profile it is the more sponsorship it’ll receive.

There are advantages and disadvantages to sponsorship:

Who it affects Pros Cons

Sport or event

More publicitySponsor linked to successIncrease in sales and profitsFree equipment and clothingMoney for advertising sponsorNo financial concerns

Financial support

Reputation can be affected by negative publicity (for example, cheating or drug use)May have contract obligations, like attending particular eventsMight be viewed as a ‘sell out’Give some control over to the sponsor with, for example, times, dates and clothing