out sponsorship of the world’s most popular league creates a positive emotional link between our brand and football fans everywhere” (www.premierleague.com accessed December 2009).
Moreover, Barclays’ sponsorship of the Premier League has enabled Barclays to capitalise on the branding strategy and business growth of clubs within the Premier league such as Manchester United, whose ability to transcend from football into mainstream culture as a testament to its branding strategy success (Johnson et al, 2008). As such, Barclays PLC president Robert E. Diamond Junior asserts that Barclays’ sponsorship of the Premier league provides the perfect strategic fit for the Barclays brand. The focus of this paper is to undertake a strategy management evaluation of the Barclays Premier League with a contextual focus on Manchester United
The last decade has seen has radical transformation of the UK football industry, with economic indicators pointing to football has a viable business model (Johnson et al, 2008, p.20). It is submitted that a key element of this is effective strategy management, which is imperative to the continued success of the Premier League as the leisure industry continues to grow as an important sector exponentially in the global marketplace (Joyce & Woods, 2001, p.488). This is further supported by the argument of Joyce and Woods that “football is big business and the leisure industry is fast becoming an important sector worldwide” (2001, p.488).
Therefore, it is submitted that a market environment analysis of the English Premier League and the multiple income streams created by leading clubs such as Manchester United within the league is imperative to the consideration of Barclays long term growth and development goals going forward.
For example, in Exall’s “Who Killed English Football?: An Analysis of the State of English Football” (2007), Exall suggests that the Premier league business model radicalised English football by