Manchester United refused to play over Coca-Cola advert

Manchester United refused to play over Coca-Cola advert
Published: 2013 August 06 14:50:08 (13550 Views)
The importance of commercial sponsorships in football has been laid bare by the Australian media who have revealed that Manchester United were willing to disappoint over 80,000 fans in Sydney in row over fizzy drinks.

United beat the Australian A-League All-Stars 5-1 last month in front of a sell-out 83,127 at the ANZ Stadium but it turns out the night's real drama took place off the pitch.

Just 20 minutes before kick-off the match was still on the brink of cancellation because United were refusing to take the pitch as long as the stadium's giant screens were flashing up ads for Coca-Cola.

This was unacceptable to Manchester United's commercial department who were on the brink of signing a multi-million pound sponsorship deal with Pepsi in the Asian-Pacific region which has since been confirmed this week.

That deal does not even include Australia, but United were not going to take any chances about offending Pepsi.

"Man U's commercial department threatened that the team would not run out if the Cola-Cola sign stayed on the big screen," an ANZ Stadium spokesman has confirmed.



"It wasn't discovered until the team arrived at the ground."

Coca-Cola are one of the main backers of the stadium which complicated the issue.

The Football Federation of Australia were even called in to help mediate proceedings and a compromise was finally reached where all Coke ads were replaced by ads for Mount Franklin water – another Coca-Cola Amatil product, but not a direct rival to Pepsi.

"There was a fairly heated discussion which involved FFA as well," an FFA insider confirmed.

"The odd part is that there were lots of Man U people at the stadium three nights earlier for State of Origin and nothing was said about the signs.

"They could hardly say they were caught by surprise."



Source - Yahoo

Tags: ManU, Coke, Pepsi,
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