Emboldened by the announcement of their seven-year, £350 million ($559 million) shirt sponsorship deal with General Motors set to begin in 2014, Manchester United have bought back the training kit sponsorship rights they sold to DHL in 2010, cutting short a massive £40 million deal over four years. Again, that was £40 million over four years just to have the letters DHL on the club's training kits -- more than most Premier League clubs get for sponsorship of their actual match kits. And now it's not good enough.
Man United now feel they can do better after their match kit sponsorship value went from £20 million a year in the last deal with Aon to one that will be worth about £50 million a year with GM.
From the PA:
"We have successfully negotiated an early buy-out of our training kit agreement with DHL effective 30 June 2013," the club said. "DHL will then continue as our global logistics sponsor.
"The significantly increased value of agreements concluded since entering into this agreement, such as our recent $559 million world record shirt sponsorship with General Motors, leads us to believe that there should be strategic opportunities to further optimise the value of these rights."
And if they're that optimistic about the value of their training kits, it's really just a matter of time before they start selling ad space on Wayne Rooney's hair transplant.
Perhaps the most impressive part of this whole thing, however, is that DHL is willing to stay on as their "global logistics" sponsor despite this slap in the face. That's like telling your significant other that you want to have an open relationship and them saying "OK, that's cool" instead of beating you with a coffee pot.