Category Archives: Football

Manchester United’s fishy China numbers

The world’s most valuable sports franchise just got a little richer yesterday after signing deals with two Chinese companies, drinks maker Wahaha and China Construction Bank.

The deals themselves look straightforward enough: Wahaha becomes Manchester United’s first official soft drink sponsor, while CCB will produce the official Man Utd-branded credit card in China. But it was something from the club’s official press release that struck me, specifically the part where United’s commercial director Richard Arnold claims the club has a following of 108 million in China.

108 million fans? Now hold on a minute… Continue reading Manchester United’s fishy China numbers

Beckham is coming to play in China

Well, he might be. OK, so he probably won’t be. In fact, he almost certainly will choose to play elsewhere. But that doesn’t make for a good headline, especially where the UK tabloids are concerned.

The problem with the tabloids is that they have absolutely no obligation to tell the truth when it comes to this sort of thing. Throw in the odd “insiders say” or “a source close to the couple” and you can make up whatever you want and stick it on the back page. Which is exactly what the tabloids do.

Continue reading Beckham is coming to play in China