Chelsea have a £200m problem to solve with Yokohama

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Yokohama are Chelsea’s current shirt sponsors, but the deal with the tyre company is due to end this May, when the 2019-20 season was expected to come to an end.

However, the coronavirus pandemic has changed economic activities and football hasn’t been left out.

Chelsea have signed a new sponsorship deal with Three, which is expected to be on the Chelsea jersey next season. But the confusion comes with Yokohama’s £40million-a-year deal – which was said to be worth £200million in full when the partnership began – comes to an end in May.

With the league still on suspension and the Premier League planning to resume in June, one could wonder whether Chelsea will have their shirts without a sponsor as Yokohama’s contract might have expired, or will the Blues still fulfill the contract by wearing a Yokohama shirt to complete the season even after the partnership has expired?

Surely, this will bring a lot of legal attention either ways as both parties didn’t prepare for anything like this.

Photo: Chelsea FC

After confirming the new deal with Three, a statement on read: “Three has long been the magic number for football fans everywhere, with three points the reward for success whenever a team takes to the field in a league or group-stage game, and for Chelsea supporters the number now has extra significance with connectivity company Three to be our new official shirt partner starting next season.

“It is, appropriately, for three years initially with Three’s logo to appear on all of Chelsea’s shirts from 2020/21, including Chelsea Women and Academy sides as well as our men’s team.

“The deal is a significant one for Chelsea financially but it is also important our official partnerships are a good fit and our new shirt one with Three clearly is.”

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Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.