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Liverpool free to sign huge new Nike deal after winning New Balance legal battle

Sadio Mane

The footwear company opened legal proceedings against the Anfield club over their alleged refusal to honour a deal worth £40 million per year, the BBC reports.

Liverpool’s agreement with New Balance runs until May 2020 and under the terms of their agreement, the American company can renew its sponsorship if it matches the offer of a competitor.

However, the Premier League side argued that New Balance couldn’t match Nike in terms of marketing, after being offered a five-year deal worth £30m a year by the sportswear giants.

Mr Justice Teare ruled in favour of the European champions, finding that "the New Balance offer on marketing was less favourable to Liverpool FC than the Nike offer".

According to the judge, New Balance couldn’t match Nike’s capability of offering “three non-football global superstar athletes and influencers of the calibre of” tennis star Serena Williams, basketball great LeBron James and musician Drake.

New Balance has supplied Liverpool’s kits since the 2015/16 season.

The court heard that the Reds spent more than £555,000 on the legal case, although the kit suppliers will pay 20 per cent of that figure.

A Liverpool spokesperson said: "We will continue with New Balance for the current season, in combination with preparing next season's Liverpool kits with our new supplier."

A New Balance spokeswoman admitted being disappointed by the ruling, saying: "We believe strongly that we matched the competing offer and would have delivered many more years of record-breaking kit sales."

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