(WFI) Castrol has signed up to become the second major global partner for the UEFA 2012 European Football Championships taking place in Poland and Ukraine.

UEFA and Castrol announced an extension of their partnership that began with the Euro 2008 tournament in Austria and Switzerland.

The motor oil producer, which joins Adidas as a worldwide sponsor for Euro 2012, pioneered the Castrol Index and Castrol Rankings for Euro 2008 to objectively measure and rank player performance. They were developed using exclusive data and with the advice of football experts.

These programmes form part of the sponsorship agreement for the Poland/ Ukraine tournament.

“The commitment of Castrol to sponsor UEFA Euro 2012 is a further vote of confidence in the tournament ahead of the qualifying draw in Warsaw on 7 February,” said David Taylor, chief executive of UEFA Events, a wholly-owned subsidiary of UEFA created to manage and handle its commercial and event operations.

“Castrol has proven to be an innovative partner for UEFA and European football and we are delighted that this mutually beneficial relationship is set to continue.”

UEFA will announce additional global sponsorship agreements in the coming weeks.

Record revenues and rising debts in German football
Germany’s professional football clubs generated record revenues for the 2008-09 season of 2.03 billion euros ($2.8 billion). But the total debt has reached a four-year high.

Despite the challenging economic environment, the 36 clubs of Germany’s top two divisions notched a 5.3% increase in revenues on the 2007-08 season. It’s the first time the German Football League (DFL) has reported a turnover in excess of two billion euros.

“The Bundesliga is proving its robustness in difficult times. It’s not possible to predict how the global economy will develop however, and the league will not be able to operate entirely independently of economic trends, DFL CEO Christian Seifert said Wednesday.

“All-in-all though, the Bundesliga

DFL CEO Christian Seifert says the Bundesliga is “well positioned even for uncertain times” (All photos Getty Images)

has done its homework and is well positioned even for uncertain times.”

The clubs brought in around 11 million euros after tax; the equivalent figure for 2007-08 was 24.5 million, the DFL said.

Seifert attributed high transfer fees as one of the reasons for the increase in total debt to 709 million euros, up from 632 million euros the previous season. According to German media reports, Seifert said the clubs were only spending half of what the English Premier League invested in wages.

Mutu fails another drugs test
Fiorentina striker Adrian Mutu, the Romanian sacked by Chelsea for using cocaine, has tested positive for a banned stimulant, according to the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI).

Mutu tested positive for sibutramine after the 2-1 victory over Bari on Jan. 10, CONI confirmed Thursday.

The 31-year-old was kicked out of Chelsea after testing positive test for cocaine in 2004. Switzerland’s Court of Arbitration for Sport last year upheld the $24 million fine handed to Mutu by FIFA for breaching his contract with the London club. Mutu has launched an appeal to a Swiss federal court.

More financial woes for Portsmouth
Portsmouth FC’s official website was shut down for a short time on Thursday after the club failed to pay their bills for its maintenance.

It is the latest embarrassment for the cash-strapped club who are bottom of the English Premier League. The club face a winding up order in the High Court in two weeks. Portsmouth have failed to pay players wages on several occasions this season.

But there was some good news for the Premiership strugglers this week. The Premier League lifted a transfer embargo which had been in place since October.

Pompey chief executive Peter Storrie said: “The club and the Premier League have worked together to allow us to be able to do some business in the last week of the transfer window.

“Avram Grant will now be trying to bring in players to strengthen the squad in loan and free deals.”

Written by Mark Bisson ([email protected])

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