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A new pressure to win at Arsenal; now it’s about big money

Dec 23, 2012, 10:45 AM EDT

Arsenal's manager Wenger reacts during their Champions League last 16 second leg soccer match against AC Milan at the Emirates Stadium in London

There’s always pressure to win in the Premiership. And there is always pressure to win at Arsenal, a club with a history of doing so.

But this is something different.

The club is under threat of losing some of its funding unless Arsene Wenger and Co. can stack up a few more “Ws” going forward.

Emirates Air is the club’s dominant sponsor; the club plays at Emirates Stadium and the brand is splashed across Arsenal gear. Now, Emirates senior vice-president Boutros Boutros has revealed that airline will add contract clauses that compel certain competitive benchmarks.

The total sponsorship has been valued at close to $50 million dollars a year, a lot of money for a club that does well enough, but is going on eight years without a meaningful trophy. Said Boutros Boutros:

There are certain clauses, from 2015, that we pay them a percentage less if they don’t perform. The Champions League is part of the new contract. It’s just to keep them on their toes. It’s fair to us and fair to them.”

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