March 4, 2013 at 9:08 pm
Barcelona have announced they will be using Qatar Airways on the front of their shirts beginning on the 1st July 2013.
Club president Sandro Rosell has signed a major deal with Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways in the region of 29 million euros a year with the airline which will replace charity Qatar Foundation.
However the deal has angered a huge number of Barcelona supporters who believe the deal is betraying the club’s core tradition of no corporate sponsors, a tradition since the club’s inception in 1889.
Rosell said: “We are delighted to be working with Qatar Airways. We share lots of values, and one of them is the search for excellence. We have lots of supporters and Qatar have lots of customers.”
Rosell, who celebrates his 49th birthday on Wednesday, stated the club has previously turned down a host of multi-million euros deal but the board decided to reject them on the basis of them not mirroring the club’s philosophy.
But this new deal with Qatar Airways breaks the club’s 113-year tradition of avoiding corporations, however, the president urged supporters to back Barcelona’s new sponsors saying: “This deal is good for our club, good for our city and good for our country.”