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The business’s sponsorship will see Cooper being able to brand itself as the “Official Tyre of Arsenal FC”, and some of their star players were on hand to check out just how grippy and robust the Wiltshire-made tyres are at an official photocall this week.
The likes of Laurent Kosciely, Mikel Arteta, Santi Cazorla and giant German international defender Per Mertesacker might benefit now from the extra grip on the roads and in defence – Arsenal were top of the league until they were thrashed 5-1 at Liverpool on Saturday, and face Manchester United, Liverpool again and European Champions Bayern Munich in the next seven days.
Manager Arsene Wenger is also famed for using motoring analogies when describing his team or players, often complaining that when Arsenal perform poorly it is because they are “playing with the handbrake on”. But the deal does not begin until the start of next season, when Cooper will start pitch-side advertising at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium, a number of marketing and promotions activities with the players, and the ability to advertise in Europe, Russia, the Middle East, South Africa and selected north African countries as Arsenal’s official tyre.
No figure has been put on the link-up deal, but it is a major step into football for Cooper, whose previous sports sponsorships have been in four-wheel and two-wheel motorsport. The firm, which was recently sold by its American owners to new Indian bosses, would certainly have had to pay Arsenal a seven-figure sum to be attached to the club and said they chose Arsenal due to “shared core values”.
Melksham-based marketing boss Sarah McRoberts said: “We’re extremely happy to have secured this agreement with Arsenal Football Club, which is a truly world-class club. The sponsorship made perfect sense to us at Cooper as we share a real affinity with the club and its fans; together, we are all driven by success and we’re very much looking forward to what I’m sure will be a very successful partnership,” she added.
Arsenal’s marketing boss, Vinai Venkatesham, said the club was “thrilled” to have Cooper Tires “on board”. “Cooper is clearly entering an exciting new era and going from strength to strength as a brand, so now is the ideal time to welcome them to the Club as an Official Partner,” he said.