What a game today wasn’t it? Who would have believed Chelsea would have scored twice in Camp Nou with 10 men? On that topic, John Terry’s moronic behaviour was too, unbelievable! Anyways, with Chelsea qualified for the final, Munich will host a 100% adidas final. It hasn’t happened in 5 years!
2007, the Champions League final in Athens opposed AC Milan and FC Liverpool. A final 100% branded adidas which sees the Rossoneri taking revenge from the 2005 Champions League final against the Reds 2-1. Five years later, on May 19 at the Allianz Arena in Munich, another 100% adidas branded final will occur.
Since 1993, date of the Champions League as we now know it, adidas and Nike teams trusted the finals. It’s quite obvious as the 2 giants share the best european teams, but it has not always been the case. In this article, I outlined 3 distinct periods:
1993-1999: Everybody’s happy
1. No less than 6 team sponsors had an exposure during the Champions League finals.
2. Very regional sponsorship. Italian teams with italian brands (AC Milan with Lotto and Juventus with Kappa). Spanish teams with spanish brands (Real Madrid with Kelme). Manchester United was sponsored by manchester based football brand Umbro.
2000-2005: adidas leadership
1. adidas had a strong leading position with 4 consecutive wins, 2 runner up teams, and a full adidas final in 2003
2. Nike and Puma are still in the race with a gold medal in 2004 and a second spot in 2001 for the Beaverton firm. Jochen Zeitz’s Puma has an only appearance in 2004 with AS Monaco.
3. Regional sponsorship is no more. Valencia switched from Luanvi to Nike in 2001. Real Madrid and AC Milan are now adidas teams. Only Juventus remains with the italian brand Lotto….for now.
2006-2010: The pie is for two only
1. Since 2006, the Champions League finals have always featured adidas and Nike teams.
2. Nike is increasing its presence by starting off in 2006 with a full Champions League final in Paris. Since 2008 the swoosh won the Champions League 3 times in a row, confirming its increasing presence with Inter’s victory yesterday.
3. In that period, adidas has ended up as runner ups more often than Nike.
4. No regional sponsors, Puma is not even present.
So from 1993 until 2011, the sponsored winning teams are:
– adidas: 6 times
– Nike: 7 times
In Munich, in less than a month, adidas will catch up with Nike as either Chelsea, Real Madrid or Bayern Munich – all adidas teams -will lift the trophy.
With Warrior and Under Armour signing major sponsorship deals with respectively Liverpool and Spurs, it will be interesting to notice whether the 2 giants trusting position will change or not.