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Saints Announce The New Shirt Sponsor
Monday, 13th May 2019 13:39

With Virgin Media moving their logo to the shirt sleeve, the new main shirt sponsor has been announced.

Saints have announced their new shirt sponsor and surprisingly enough it appears to be a Chinese company and the initials suggest that it could be part of the Lander Group connected to Gao Jisheng.

At this moment in time there is virtually no information available on who LD Sports are or what they do, there website address merely contains their name and logo and pictures of several sports stadiums presumably in China, it is though touted as the biggest sponsorship deal in the history of Saints so bigger than the £7.5 million a year with the former deal with Virgin Media.

If it from a company connected to Gao then it will perhaps suggest that our majority shareholder and therefore our de facto owner is committed to Southampton FC contrary to the beliefs of some who find it hard to accept that he is not in it for entirely righteous reasons.

Despite the fact that all player sale fees have been reinvested back in the squad he has been accused of in it only for the money.

Only Gao himself perhaps knows the truth, but certainly so far he has done nothing that would cause concern, unlike some new owners he has taken time to find out about the business and how it is run before he has started to make his own changes and that is a good sign as he appears to be a shrewd businessman rather than one of those football club owners who make big promises that they cannot possibly hope to fulfil.

So good news for Saints that the money coming into the club seems to have increased by maintaining Virgin as a club sponsor albeit on the sleeves as well as bringing in LD Sports for more money than Virgin Media were paying, hopefully some will be invested into the squad.

Saints announced the deal with the following statement

Southampton Football Club is delighted to announce a three-year agreement with LD Sports as its new front-of-shirt partner, in what represents the biggest sponsorship deal in the club’s history.

LD Sports is a brand new sports content, marketing and entertainment platform, which is launching this summer for the Chinese market, and, as Main Club Sponsor, its logo will now take pride of place on the first-team’s kits through to the end of the of the 2021/22 campaign.

Additionally, the deal will also see it displayed on the front of the Under-23s’ and Under-18s’ shirts, along with the various squads’ training wear.

As well as providing exposure for LD Sports on the front of its shirts, the partnership will also see the club help to establish and develop the company’s brand and presence in China.

The deal is representative of Southampton’s growing presence and reputation in the country, which has increased considerably following the arrival of majority shareholder Mr Gao in August 2017.

Already, Saints have embarked on a successful pre-season trip to China, spending more than two weeks there last summer, while they will visit Macau this July as part of their preparations for the new Premier League campaign.

Southampton Football Club’s Commercial Director, David Thomas, commented: “We are delighted LD Sports has chosen a partnership with Southampton Football Club as a platform to help launch their brand this summer.

“It’s an exciting challenge, and we are looking forward to using our growing credentials and awareness in China, as well as our content and digital marketing expertise, to help the brand achieve its business objectives over the next three years.”

Justin Tan, Business Development Manager at LD Sports, commented: “We are delighted to be partnering with Southampton Football Club.

“It is an exciting development for LD Sports, which will help us make a significant impact with our launch this summer and also provide us with a platform from which to grow and engage our fanbase across the world.

“We strongly believe this partnership will be a prosperous and beneficial one for both parties, and we are looking forward to the start of the 2019/20 Premier League season with Southampton.”

LD Sports will be launching its new site,, later this summer, with full details to follow in due course.

Photo: Action Images

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BoondockSaint added 15:12 - May 13
Hopefully this is how Mr. Gao funnels money into the club getting around the (Not Really) Fair Play Rules.

Dellwizard added 16:15 - May 13
BoondockSaint. I was thinking just the same thing.

highfield49 added 16:25 - May 13
Now that would be seriously funny, the top six complaining that we'd broken ffp rules.

Dellwizard added 17:20 - May 13
Well if Man City can do it......

Saintpaul120 added 08:18 - May 14
So what role does Under Armour have now within the club? Are they still just the kit providers?

tell101 added 09:58 - May 15
Sounds a bit conspiracy theory BUT I think the shirt sponsorship deal is a vehicle to get more money into the club and was probably part of the original buy out plan. With current Chinese government scrutiny and the sudden fact that this entity seems to have emerged from obscurity to provide a record breaking investment linked to our fine club seems somewhat suspicious. Ultimately more investment has to be a good thing if it is real. I for one was impressed with Virgins commitment to our club and feel that relationship has been soured a bit by this deal. They funded refreshment and travel deals that we havent seen before. I hope we havent trashed that relationship in favor of something that at the moment looks a little bit like vaporware

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