The Open has agreed a media partnership with Manchester City as part of its ongoing efforts to leverage the global marketing reach of Premier League clubs and tap into the popularity of golf among football fans ahead of the 146th staging of the championship.
The partnership will see both the Open and City deliver exclusive content across their digital portfolios in the build up to the tournament at Royal Birkdale this July.
As part of the collaboration the Claret Jug tour will stop by Manchester City’s store within the stadium campus. The trophy will also be on display at the club’s hospitality golf days.
A merchandise promotion around the partnership will see City fans receive a free blue Open branded cap when purchasing tickets for the Open if they use the promotional code ‘146thOpenCity’.
To mark the launch of the partnership, Spanish golfer and major champion, José Maria Olazábal, visited City Football Academy where he met former player Paul Dickov and Manchester City Women and England captain, Steph Houghton.
Olazábal also met with Man City manager and golf fan Pep Guardiola. The pair posed with the Claret Jug trophy before Olazábal demonstrated his skills on a golf simulator.
The former Masters winner also entertained fans at the Etihad Stadium before the Liverpool game and at half time where he took on City fans in a series of skills challenges.
Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, executive director of championships at The R&A (organisers of The Open), said: “Manchester City is one of the biggest clubs in the world and The Open is one of the world’s greatest sporting events. We are looking forward to working with Manchester City to help promote the Championship ahead of its return to the historic links at Royal Birkdale for the tenth time.”
Manchester City’s chief operating officer, Omar Berrada, added: “The Open is a cherished sporting institution, steeped in history, with an ever-growing global fan base. As a proud North West club, we’re delighted The R&A is hosting the next Championship in the region and look forward to collaborating on innovative and engaging content for both sets of fans.”
The partnership with Manchester City follows on from a similar deal with fellow Premier League club Everton FC, who are based in Merseyside where the tournament will be held. The deal with Everton also includes exclusive digital content, access to the Claret Jug and merchandise promotions.