Ford reaches end of the road with Uefa Champions League

Automotive manufacturer Ford will conclude its long-running partnership with leading European club football competition the Uefa Champions League at the end of this season’s tournament.

Ford has sponsored the Champions League since it commenced as a re-branded version of the European Cup in 1992-93 and has used the platform to launch several new models.

At the 2014 Champions League final in Lisbon, Ford will sign off by unveiling its new Ford Mustang model before refocusing its European business.

Stephen Odell, president of Ford Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: "With the arrival of the Ford Mustang in Europe, we are finishing our long-standing sponsorship of the Uefa Champions League on a high note. While both Ford and Uefa have benefited from our partnership, now is the right time for Ford to move in a new direction as we accelerate new product launches in Europe, with more than 25 new vehicles coming over the next five years."

Heineken, the world’s third largest brewer, in October extended its sponsorship of the Champions League in a three-year deal, from 2015-16 to 2017-18. Heineken, which replaced its Amstel brand with its main brand as a sponsor of the Champions League in 2005, was the first sponsor to commit to the tournament beyond the current 2012 to 2015 cycle.

Along with Ford and Heineken, current sponsors of the Champions League are Gazprom, MasterCard, Sony PlayStation and UniCredit.