New Balance are set to take Liverpool to court in a fight to continue as the club’s kit partner, after matching a record-breaking offer from Nike that was set to see the Swoosh become the Red’s new kit manufacturer from next season.
As we reported in July, Nike are primed to become Liverpool’s new shirt manufacturer from the 2020/21 season, and have reportedly agreed a deal of over £75 million per season – becoming the most lucrative shirt sponsor deal in both the club’s and Premier League history.
Liverpool are reportedly “on the verge” of signing a record-breaking kit deal with Nike ?
— VERSUS (@vsrsus) August 22, 2019
But reports have emerged this morning from The Athletic’s James Pearce that New Balance have now entered into legal dispute with Liverpool – after matching the deal made by Nike – and are refusing to let go of the partnership, which is set to expire at the end of the season.
New Balance told The Athletic:
“In line with our current contract, we have matched the offer made by Nike. As part of the renewal process, LFC has called into question elements of the agreement and as such we are asking the courts for clarity.”
As part of the dispute, Liverpool will argue New Balance cannot offer the same distribution that Nike can globally. New Balance products are not as widely available, and Liverpool want to maximise the reach of their kits to a much higher level with the new deal. This season, New Balance products such as the club’s 2019/20 ‘keeper shirt repeatedly selling out online and leaving fans waiting more much longer periods to get their hands on official club product.
Nike are still favourites to secure the sponsorship from next season, with several reports indicating Liverpool will target Swoosh-sponsored talent such as Kylian Mbappé, Jadon Sancho and Kai Havertz next season.