Manchester United announced their decision to change their main sponsor to Qualcomm Snapdragon starting from the 2024/2025 season.

In the early hours of Wednesday, September 13, 2023, the Premier League giant, Manchester United, announced their decision to change their main sponsor to Qualcomm Snapdragon starting from the 2024/2025 season.

Currently, Manchester United is sponsored by TeamViewer. The partnership between the two parties has been in place since the 2021/2022 season, with a contract value of £47 million per year.

At the end of 2022, Manchester United decided to buy back their sponsorship rights from TeamViewer, with the German company still remaining a jersey sponsor with reduced visibility until the end of the contract.

Now, through their official website, Manchester United has announced that they have entered into an agreement with the American technology company, Qualcomm Snapdragon.

Manchester United PLC has agreed to expand its strategic collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., which will feature the Snapdragon brand on the renowned club’s uniform.”

Manchester United did not explicitly mention the duration of the contract or the amount Qualcomm Snapdragon paid to appear on the MU jersey.

However, Sportico reported that Manchester United’s partnership with Snapdragon is the most expensive deal in world football, surpassing Real Madrid’s deal with Emirates.

This Brazilian player’s journey accelerated from the Sao Paulo favela to a £85 million transfer to Old Trafford, but his career came to a halt due to serious allegations.

Erik ten Hag and Manchester United placed great trust in Antony. At the manager’s request, who had worked with the Brazilian winger for two years at Ajax, winning consecutive league titles with him, United paid £85 million ($106 million) to sign him in August 2022. This fee made Antony the second most expensive player in the club’s history, second only to Paul Pogba.

And unlike Pogba, United didn’t pay to acquire the coveted world-class star pursued by top European clubs at that time; they paid for potential. In general, Antony did not live up to that potential in his disappointing first season, causing frustration at Old Trafford.

And now, his future at the club is in serious doubt after it was announced that he is taking a leave of absence to address allegations of assault made by multiple women. Antony has denied all the accusations against him.

These claims were first made by his former girlfriend Gabriela Cavallin and were later followed by accusations from two other women, shocking the football world and putting United in a very uncomfortable situation just weeks after they were heavily criticized for their handling of the Mason Greenwood case.

GOAL describes Antony’s career, from growing up alongside gangsters and guns in the Sao Paulo favela to his move to Ajax and United, his success with Brazil, and the allegations that threaten to derail his career…

Antony hails from the Sao Paulo favela known as Inferninho, translated as ‘Little Hell.’ Antony revealed his traumatic childhood in the favela in an interview with The Players’ Tribune in 2022, detailing his experiences living alongside gangsters and drug dealers and growing up in extreme poverty.

“If you really want to understand me as a person, then you have to understand where I come from. My history. My origins. Inferninho,” he said. “It’s a notorious place. Fifteen steps from our front door, there were always drug dealers doing their business, passing drugs to each other. The smell was always outside our window.”

Antony’s home was so small that he not only shared a room with his parents until he was a teenager but also shared a bed with them.

For Antony, armed violence and police raids were not unfamiliar. “We were used to seeing guns, so it wasn’t scary. It was just part of everyday life,” he told The Players’ Tribune.

“We were more scared when the police would break down our door. Once, they stormed our house looking for someone, and they were running and shouting. Of course, they didn’t find anything. But when you’re very young, those moments stick with you.”

He also recalled finding a dead body on the way to school when he was a child. “In the favela, you become immune to these things,” he added. “There’s no other way to go, and I had to go to school. So, I just closed my eyes and jumped over the body.”

Antony’s escape from the horrors of the local area was through soccer matches he would play with his brother and fellow favela residents. Without money to buy shoes, he played “barefoot, with bloodied feet.”

“I was still small, but I dribbled the ball with a ferocity that came from God. Dribbling the ball was always in me. It was a natural instinct. And I refused to bow down to anyone,” he recalled.

“I’d take on the drug dealers. Nutmegging bus drivers. Outsmarting thieves. I really didn’t care. With the ball at my feet, I had no fear.”

Antony had a major breakthrough after being discovered by the futsal team director of Gremio Barueri. The director was watching a match in the Inferinho favela, and Antony, then eight years old, stood out with his daring style of play, performing tricks against adults, many of whom were feared as gangsters.

After taking his first small steps towards becoming a footballer and idolizing Ronaldinho by watching YouTube clips on his neighbor’s Wi-Fi, Antony promised his mother that he would become a professional footballer and buy a red Range Rover. He went on to fulfill both of those promises.

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