The big guns are coming on board for the EURO2008 bid. The SFA were pleased to announce that multinational drinks giant Diageo was the latest sponsor to join the party. Can't have an Irish connection without the Guinness after all. The announcement, that Diageo have put up a six figure cash injection (Euros), was made today in Glasgow and Dublin and will boost the bid's profile. Of course, the company is not a stranger to Scottish football. One of their brands is Bells whiskey which sponsors the SFL. The idea of having countries that have a reputation for liking a drink now and them, sponsored by a drinks company will allow some fun to be had with headlines in the future. But why bite the hand that is offering Euros?
Lord Macfarlane of Bearsden, Honorary Life President of Diageo Scotland was understandably delighted at the sponsorship deal and said: "Guinness and Bell's Scotch Whisky are synonymous with Ireland and Scotland. Diageo is uniquely placed to support this joint bid and will work closely with the Scottish Executive and the Irish government in an effort to secure this great tournament for the two countries."
SFA Chief Executive David Taylor said: "Everyone in Europe knows brands such as Johnnie Walker and Guinness, and here in Scotland we are all aware of Bell's involvement with football. This sponsorship is the perfect fit and it will certainly enhance the profile of Scotland and Ireland's bid. We are delighted they have joined BT Scotland in supporting our bid."
Of course if there is a bar open, there is a good chance that you will find a politician nearby. Mike Watson, Minister of Tourism, Sport and Culture, said of the deal: "The support of a company such as Diageo, with a stable of internationally renowned brands adds a great deal of credibility to the bid. The company has a strong association with both Scotland and Ireland and this partnership has a great synergy." Not something that is easy to say after a few pints of Guinness.