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Northern Rock announces new sponsorship deal for Newcastle United

In a bizarre about turn, Northern Rock has today confirmed a new £10 million four-year sponsorship deal with Newcastle United. Northern Rock was originally the main sponsor for Newcastle United but after the business hit trouble the deal was thought to be coming to an end with Newcastle United forced to look elsewhere for a big slice of its income. However, it seems that the new Northern Rock bank believes that sponsorship of Newcastle United offers both a strategic fit and an acceptable return on investment.

The contract will expire in the 2013/14 season and be worth a maximum of £10 million to Newcastle United but it has obviously attracted much criticism when you bear in mind Northern Rock is a public owned bank. It does seem rather bizarre that the bank has decided, after a period during which it was bailed out and supported by taxpayers, to spend £10 million on a sponsorship deal. Will directors of Northern Rock be as thoughtful when it comes to repossessing homes and chasing overdue money?

Even though there is no doubt that Northern Rock has strong ties to the region it is not hard to see why many people will believe this is a step too far, at least at the moment.

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