If you’re a football fan, you probably only needed five minutes on the internet today to find out that Barcelona have signed a big sponsorship deal.
The Catalan media won’t shut up about it, and in one of these stories, they say that Manchester City could’ve got a partnership with the company first.
According to Mundo Deportivo, Rakuten negotiated with City during the 2011/12 season, and the parties were very close to reach a deal. The talks were happening between Ferran Soriano and Hiroshi Mikitani.
The problem is that Mikitani, representing Rakuten, demanded Manchester City to play in red, even knowing who their local rivals are.
Manchester City obviously refused to do so, and the company pulled out of the deal. Mundo Deportivo claim Rakuten were the ones who said “no” to Manchester City, not the other way around.
This is a strange story, which sounds like a football myth, it’s a good job they didn’t ask Barcelona to have an all white away kit next season.