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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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FA in talks over new sponsorship

The FA has told ESPNsoccernet that it is in talks with "interested parties" to find a new sponsor for the FA Cup for next season.

After successful sponsorship deals with AXA and currently E.On, the FA is now confident that they can find a new company to take over, having written to some already to ascertain the level of interest.

E.On first said that it would end its four-year contract with the FA after the 2010 final, but performed a U-turn and signed a one-year extension last year, worth a reported a £10 million.

The FA Cup is worth £32 million over a four-year cycle, but the chances of hitting that target again are highly unlikely as E.On has decided not to continue its sponsorship, leaving the door open for others.

"Talks are progressing with interested parties, although that is not to say any announcement or deal is imminent," an FA spokesman told ESPNsoccernet. "As for writing to companies, it would be remiss of the FA as an organisation not to explore every avenue to find a commercial partner efficiently.

"Of course there are lot of companies wanting to be associated with the FA Cup, and are rushing to be involved, but the FA Cup has a certain value, and the FA want to get its true value in the market place.

"There are many methods being used, besides writing a letter, which, I believe, was done some time ago in any case. It is all part of normal commercial practice to generate revenue, which the FA put back into the game.

"We are going through the process of trying to obtain the best deal possible. The FA Cup is a very important asset for the FA and there is no way we would 'give it away', although we would not discuss the price we are seeking."

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