Billions of pounds are spent and made globally each year as the business of sport grows ever-more sophisticated. The interaction between athletes, agents, fans, clubs, venues and governing bodies – as well as the brands that engage with them – is intricate and ever-changing.
These relationships and the complex framework of rights and regulations which surround them are what the business of sport is built upon, requiring specialist knowledge, a strategic approach and real commercial nous on the part of legal advisers.
As one of the UK’s leading sports practices, we are not just seasoned legal experts, we have a deep and rich knowledge of the sector. Many of our team are ex-professional athletes or have worked in-house at clubs, sponsors and major events.
Our team is known for its expertise across all commercial aspects of sport including: sponsorship, merchandise licensing, ticketing and hospitality, data management and exploitation, gambling, gaming, supplier agreements and rights protection.
On top of this, our in depth understanding of the complex layering of commercial rights in sport sets us apart. We advise rights holders at all levels, and work closely with brands and their marketing agencies when investing in sports partnerships and creating sports content.
In a disrupted media environment we excel in helping sports stakeholders to deliver their content across a spectrum of traditional and digital platforms.
Our top-ranked advertising and marketing practice puts us in prime position to advise on regulatory issues as they impact sports marketing. Advising sports sponsors in heavily regulated industries such as alcohol and betting is a particular strength. We also advise on social media rules and ambush marketing on a daily basis.
On the talent side we have decades of experience negotiating deals for and with some of sports biggest stars; be it agency representation agreements, advertising campaigns or endorsements.
From negotiating global sponsorship deals, advising on player, manager and backroom staff employment issues, and implementing complex football financing deals, to advising on player transfers, sports immigration, brand protection and a wide range of commercial contracts and disputes, we bring to bear the added dimension of practical experience and in-depth insight.
That’s exactly why we act for some of the world’s biggest names in sport.
You can view our latest 2 Sport blog posts below and our full blog here.
Law expert believes coronavirus may impact overseas recruitment by English clubs: Stephen O’Flaherty comments for The Irish Times16 July 2020
New guidelines issued by the British Home Office this week have left the situation in sport largely unchanged ahead of the summer transfer window.
Manchester City escapes Champions League ban: John Shea comments for Bloomberg14 July 2020
The credibility of UEFA’s financial fair play rules has been questioned after Europe’s top soccer regulatory body lost in its attempt to ban Manchester City for two years from the Champions League.
Sports Q&A - What’s FIFA’s position on the transfer window and other regulatory issues impacted by the Covid-19 crisis?06 July 2020
Following the unprecedented disruption caused to football by COVID-19, FIFA published a set of principles and guidelines back in April 2020 in order to address some of the key regulatory and legal issues arising, especially with regard to player contracts and the transfer system.
Wigan Athletic football club enters administration amid 'significant impact' of coronavirus pandemic: Karish Andrews comments for City A.M.02 July 2020
Wigan Athletic has entered administration following the “significant impact” of the coronavirus pandemic on the football club’s finances. Karish Andrews comments for City A.M. on how the Covid-19 crisis was always going to cause great difficulty for football clubs that rely heavily on match day revenue.
COVID-19 advice for corporate occupiers22 June 2020
Commercial tenants – whether occupying offices, retail premises, industrial units or other property - face potentially existential questions arising out of their landlord and tenant relations, how to manage cashflow and outgoings as revenues dry up, premises shut down and uncertainty reigns.
Sports Q&A - What data protection issues do we need to consider before testing athletes for COVID-19?05 June 2020
The Premier League has started to test players and others as part the league's "Project Restart", prompting clubs and other bodies of many sports to ask if/how they should follow suit.