Heineken 0.0% takes over Europa League sponsorship

Heineken 0.0% will take over sponsorship of the Europa League when the tournament resumes on Wednesday night.

The Dutch brewer has sponsored the Champions League and Europa League for several years, and the current deal runs until 2024.

Its eponymous full-strength beer is normally promoted during European clashes, but it now sees a strong opportunity to shine a light on the alcohol-free variant.

The Europa League was suspended in March due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The second leg fixtures in the round of 16 will take place on Wednesday and Thursday this week.

Man Utd host LASK at Old Trafford on Wednesday, and Wolves welcome Olympiakos to Molineux, while the biggest game pits La Liga heavyweights Sevilla against in-form Serie A side Roma.

The last eight teams left standing will then head to Germany for one-legged quarter-finals on Monday, with the semi-finals taking place the following Sunday, and the final slated for August 21.

Heineken 0.0% will continue to sponsor the Europa League until 2024. Next season the tournament will feature the likes of Arsenal, Leicester, Tottenham, Villarreal, Roma and AC Milan.

Sponsorship rights include LED pitch boarding exposure, digital rights, team greeter, match screenings and ticket giveaways, all of which will be incorporated into the activation of the brand campaign, called Now You Can.

Hans Erik Tuijt, global sponsorship director at Heineken, said, “Heineken 0.0% has seen incredibly strong growth over the past few years, so we're delighted to announce its first major sponsorship at a time when football is available to watch almost every day of the week. We feel it’s crucial to encourage responsible drinking and give consumers a choice.”

Heineken has been a UEFA partner since 1994 through its sponsorship of the Champions League, and it started to sponsor the second tier Europa League in 2015. It was also supposed to sponsor Euro 2020 this summer, taking over from Carlsberg, but the tournament was postponed to next year due to the coronavirus crisis.

Guy-Laurent Epstein, director of marketing at UEFA, said: “This move represents the start of another great chapter of the longstanding relationship, between Heineken and UEFA.

“This exciting new sponsorship will begin immediately featuring at UEFA Europa League matches for the rest of the season.

“With the introduction of the UEFA Europa Conference League starting in 2021/22 season and Heineken’s commitment already confirmed for the next four years, we look forward to helping Heineken 0.0% establish its position within European club football, and as the biggest non-alcoholic beer sponsorship of its kind.”

Heineken 0.0% is now available in 58 markets globally, including 34 in Europe.