Ed Sheeran has become the latest musician to sponsor a club soccer jersey, signing a deal to take over the front of the men’s and women’s first team kits from his beloved Ipswich Town.
Sheeran has been a die-hard Ipswich fan since the day (see below – young Edward in his 1997-99 home jersey) and he and his family are seen on Portman Road on a frequent basis.
The new shirt will not have Sheeran’s name on it but instead have mathematical symbols followed by the word “turn”.
“Everything will be revealed in time”, he said.
Sheeran adds his name to an illustrious list of bands and musicians who have done the same for their favorite youth clubs or teams. Here are some examples…
Bohemians (2021) – DC Fountains
Irish Premier Division club Bohemians FC already look a bit like a neo-punk outfit, so their marriage to the biggest post-punk band to emerge on the charts in the past two years makes perfect sense.
Fun Fact: The “DC” in the titular band name means “Dublin City”.
City of St Albans (2020-21) – Enter Shikari
St Albans is a sleepy Roman town on the outskirts of London. It is also the birthplace of the politico-punk-electronica group Enter Shikari.
And in August 2020, St Albans City, which plays in the National League South, announced the group as their new shirt sponsor.
Margate (2018-present) – The Libertines
Margate has become a bohemian, seaside paradise for fans of all manner of ’90s and’ 90s British pop culture. Artist Tracey Emin grew up in the city and has a studio there, and the Libertines recently opened a hotel. , for poets and wandering minstrels.
The group has sponsored the home team, which plays in the Premier League of the Isthmian League, since 2018. And this year’s kits are really something.
St Roch Primary School (2018) – Mogwai
In 2018, the Glaswegian Mogwai group put their name on the tapes of a local elementary school.
Drummer Martin Bulloch had known the school’s deputy principal for years and offered to help when he learned that the kids had to play in old kits, with no funds for new stock.
Notts County FC (2017-present) – Jake Bugg
Indie starlets Jake Bugg has been wearing his name on the front of Notts County shirts since 2017 and is currently sponsoring the away jersey.
Bugg is a big fan of Magpies and tries to raise awareness of the club on his tours.
The Seven Sisters Under 9 (2017) – Sleaford Mods
It’s strange. Four years ago, the angry and screaming duo Sleaford Mods agreed to sponsor a youth team in South Wales. The couple, Jason Williamson and Andrew Fearn, are both from Nottingham. We are confused too, but fine with them.
These are just a few happy crossovers – bands and musicians collaborate with football teams more often than you might think.
Among others worthy of honorable mention …
- Eastleigh Reds Under-13s – sponsored by rave group The Prodigy in 2012
- Bonnyton Thistle Under-9s – sponsored by Scottish rock band Biffy Clyro in 2009
- Greenbank FC Under-10s – sponsored by heavy rock band Motorhead in 2006
- Newport County – sponsored by comedy hip-hop group Goldie Lookin ‘Chain in 2004-05
- Brighton and Hove Albion – sponsored by Fatboy Slim’s Skint label from 1999
- Cardiff City – sponsored by psychedelic Welsh outfit Super Furry Animals in 1999
- Clydebank – sponsored by Scottish soft-rockers Wet Wet Wet in 1993