Manmohan Taparia
Aug 17, 2012

Weekend Fun: The English Premier League is back

The long wait is over, as the English football season comes back to life

Weekend Fun: The English Premier League is back

After a break of three months, the top leagues of Europe commence a nine month-long gruelling season. The most widely followed league in India is the Barclay’s Premier League (of England), and the first game week kicks off on Saturday, 18 August.

And there's no dearth of brands associated with the property.

The league is officially branded as the Barclay’s Premier League, after the UK-based bank became the title sponsors in 2004.

Nike continues its association with the league, and will supply the official match balls.

Other sponsors include:

GlaxoSmithKline’s sports energy drink Lucozade

Video game maker EA Sports

Trading card and sticker giant Topps

Besides the above sponsors, the league actively sees organisations across various categories associating with teams or athletes in one way or the other, in order to gain brand recognition on a global scale.

The full list of sponsors is here

Most teams seem to have finalised their squads. They are using the friendly pre-season games to gear up players and access new recruits. The season promises to be full of twists and turns before the eventual champion is crowned in April.

We have a look at some of the most followed teams from the league and some of the campaigns leveraging their sponsor’s tie up with the respective clubs.

Champions Manchester City seem to be satisfied with its squad, having made only one new recruit in the form of England youngster Jack Rodwell.

Watch Etihad Airways ad here:

European Champions Chelsea on the other hand has been busy in the transfer window, buying Marko Marin, Eden Hazard and the Brazilian youngster Oscar, while letting go of top striker Didier Drogba, Jose Bosingwa, and Salomon Kalou. Chelsea's Roberto Di Matteo doesn’t seem to be anywhere close to closing the cheque book, as the papers link the Blues with top South American attackers like Cavani and Hulk.

Watch Adidas’ Chelsea advert here:

Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal insist on challenging to be champions with the buys of Lucas Podolski, Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla, while last season’s Golden Boot winner, Robin van Persie seems to be on his way out.

Watch Citroen’s commercial here:

Manchester United have strengthened their squad with the signing of Shinji Kagawa and Van Persie as well as relatively unknown youngsters Nick Powell and Angelo Henriquez. Names continue to be linked with the Old Trafford outfit, with the likes of Leighton Baines being on top.

Watch DHL’s ad with Manchester United here:

Ex Chelsea manager Andres Villas-Boas has returned to London, with Tottenham Hotspur this time, as he seeks to prove his critics wrong. He has already bought Jan Vertonghen and Gylfi Sigurdsson to add to his squad,  after Luka Modric looks set to move to Real Madrid.

Watch Under Armour’s ad for Tottenham here:

Liverpool has brought in a manager in Brendan Rodgers, to try and regain lost ground as they look for a top four finish. The club has signed Joe Allan and Fabio Borini while letting go of Dirk Kuyt, Maxi Rodriguez and Alberto Aquilani.

Watch Warrior Sport’s ad for Liverpool FC’s association here:

Last season’s surprise team, Newcastle United, will look to prove that last season was no fluke, and build on its fifth place finish.

Watch Puma’s ad for Newcastle United here:

Catch the first game week of matches live on ESPN Star Sports (IST)

Saturday 18 August

West Brom vs Liverpool at 7:25 pm IST
Newcastle United vs Spurs at 9:55pm ISt

Arsenal  vs Sunderland at 7:25pm IST

Sunday 19 August

Wigan Athletic vs Chelsea at 5:55pm IST
Manchester City vs Southampton at 8:25pm IST

Campaign India

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