Defending Spanish La Liga champions and current table-toppers FC Barcelona have signed the biggest shirt sponsorship deal in history with Qatar Sports Investments. The deal will run for 5 ½ years until 2016 and is worth €166 million ($222 USD). It was finalized on Monday at the Barca's iconic Camp Nou stadium between representatives of both entities.
The Catalan giants were the last major European club to have a jersey without a shirt sponsor until they started carrying the logo of international children's welfare body Unicef in 2006 as part of a partnership to raise awareness and funds to benefit children affected by HIV and AIDS.
According to a press release from Qatar Sports Investments:
Qatar Foundation supports Qatar on its journey from carbon economy to knowledge economy by unlocking human potential through programs in education, scientific research and community development. The announcement follows the historic decision by FIFA to award Qatar the hosting rights for the first FIFA World Cup in the Middle East in 2022...
FC Barcelona and Qatar Foundation also remain committed to the club's existing relationship with Unicef. Unicef will continue to have a presence on the FCB shirt and receive significant contributions from the club over the next five years.
Photo Credits: Getty Images