Sheffield United’s thriving academy, which has produced £25m worth of young talent in recent seasons, is to be sponsored by one of the UK’s leading entertainment providers.
Redtooth – the club’s away kit sponsor for the last campaign – has agreed a two-year deal to take up the naming rights to United’s Academy.
The Shirecliffe venue, which features four full-sized pitches, an indoor pitch, fitness, sports medicine and educational facilities, will be known as the Redtooth Academy.
The Academy has produced a remarkable crop of young players in the last decade. Current Premier League stars Phil Jagielka, Kyle Walker, Kyle Naughton and Matt Lowton all benefited from the Academy.
It was also the platform for the Blades 2011 FA Youth Cup final team which has seen a number of the players become part of United’s first team squad, including England U21 international Harry Maguire and goalkeeper George Long, called-up for the England U20 World Cup squad.
Martin Green, owner of Redtooth and a lifelong Blades fan, said:
“We are delighted to become associated with the Academy,” said . “We are a growing business with a lot of successful partnerships in the sport and leisure sectors. Our association with Sheffield United reflects this as well as the important role the academy plays in the Sheffield community, where many thousands each year use the facilities.
“Redtooth is already the biggest quiz company in the country, but we need to work hard to maintain our position as a leading entertainment provider in what is a competitive industry.”
Sheffield United Chief Executive Julian Winter said:
“The Academy is a fantastic asset for Sheffield United and to have a well-known brand as Redtooth as a partner positions the club strongly to develop even more talented youngsters for the club on top of the 34 who have already graduated to first team football.”
Commercial Director Steve Coakley said:
“We have forged such an excellent relationship with Redtooth, over the last 18 months or so particularly – the involvement of Redtooth in the development of last season’s away kit was success and the shirt was very popular with supporters.
“The extension of Redtooth’s commercial activities with the Blades now takes their recent financial commitment with the club well into six figures and with the introduction of the salary cost management protocol it is imperative we look beyond Bramall Lane to maximise our commercial revenue opportunities”
Redtooth employs 20 people at its headquarters in Barlborough, North Derbyshire and a further 20 people across the UK and abroad. It is a leading name in entertainment for the licensed trade.
In addition to organising the UK’s largest pub poker league with well over 1,200 venues registered nationwide, Redtooth is the largest supplier of pub quizzes to the UK pub market with over 3,000 pubs and clubs receiving their weekly quiz from Redtooth.