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North West brands top the Premier League kit deal table

Courtesy PremierLeague.com

With the Premier League poised to kick off this weekend, North West brands have already bagged themselves a solid league position when it comes to who manufacturers this season’s kits.

Manchester’s Umbro will have its branding splashed across the shirts of five clubs this season – Bournemouth, Brentford, Burnley, West Ham United and Luton Town, more than any other manufacturer. Meanwhile Liverpool-founded, Manchester-based Castore isn’t far behind with three clubs donning its kits this year – Newcastle, Aston Villa and Wolves.

That means that a total of eight out of 20 clubs in this year’s competition will be wearing kits originating, like the football league itself which was created in Manchester in 1888, in the North West.

Although there are plenty of similarities between the two brands, including their North West roots and the fact that both were founded by brothers, there’s plenty to set them apart too.

For a start, Umbro is almost as old as the Football League itself – it was founded in Wilmslow in 1924, its name created by contracting the name of the H ‘UM’ phrey ‘BRO’ thers who created the company.

Castore is a somewhat more recent phenomenon, having sprung to life in Liverpool just eight years ago in 2015 courtesy of brothers Thomas and Philip Beahon, the former a one-time Tranmere Rovers youth player. It has since gone on to win the backing, both financial and sartorial, of the likes of tennis player Andy Murray and New Look founder Tom Singh.

While Umbro has been mixing it with the big boys of sportswear for almost a century, Castore can perhaps be particularly proud to have made such an impression so quickly – in the Premier League kit manufacturer table the young upstart sits behind only its local rival and global giants Nike and Adidas, who each supply four teams. Castore also counts teams in each of the Championship and Leagues One and Two among its customers.

Tom Beahon, co-founder of Castore, said: “We are beyond proud to be partnered with so many fantastic football clubs ahead of the upcoming season. It’s so important to us that our brand is represented not just at the highest level, but throughout the game.

“Our kits encompass various individual aspects of each club involved, whether that be the team’s history, the region itself or paying homage to kit designs from years gone by. We employ cutting edge design techniques to ensure not only the players and the fans look great on and off the pitch, but the footballers are wearing the best possible equipment to succeed. We can’t wait for the start of the 23/24 season and we wish our teams the best of luck.”

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