PUMA SCORES: Days after Adidas revealed it would not be renewing its contract with the French league one soccer club Olympique de Marseille, signaling the end of a decades-long partnership, Puma has swooped in on the action with the announcement of a “long-term partnership” with the club starting July 1, 2018.

Puma will become the official partner, global technical supplier and official licensing partner of Olympique de Marseille in the deal, which marks the biggest commercial contract in the club’s history, according to the club’s chief executive officer Jacques-Henri Eyraud. “Olympique de Marseille will be the most important sports club for Puma in France, and we were all won over by the vision of its directors to actively support us on an international level,” said Eyraud.

Puma’s roster of football clubs includes Borussia Dortmund, Arsenal FC and Leicester City FC. The Football Associations of Italy, Switzerland, Austria and the Czech Republic are also part of Puma’s portfolio, as well as some of the world’s best players such as Antoine Griezmann, Olivier Giroud, Sergio ‘Kun’ Agüero, Cesc Fàbregas, Mario Balotelli, Hector Bellerin, Marco Reus, Julian Weigl and Yaya Touré.

Adidas earlier in March said that after months of negotiations, and despite “several dynamic and ambitious proposals” on its part, the activewear company had failed to come to an agreement with the new management at the club on the terms of a new contract.

“As the club’s principal financial partner for many years, Adidas accompanied a club dear to its heart to the core with professionalism, commitment and success, both through the legendary moments and the more delicate times,” the company stated.

For its part, the fellow German sporting goods giant is the main supplier to a number of the world’s leading soccer clubs including Manchester United, Real Madrid, FC Bayern Munich, Juventus Turin and AC Milan, as well as star players such as Leo Messi, Gareth Bale, Luis Suárez and Paul Pogba. As the official partner of a number of the world’s most important football competitions, such as the FIFA World Cup, the FIFA Confederations Cup and the UEFA Champions League, Adidas also equips a number of football federations including Spain, Germany and Argentina.

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