Maguire: Arsenal to reap the rewards after signing UN treaty

Arsenal have displayed smart business sense by signing up to the UN’s Sports Climate Action Framework — potential sponsors will love it.

That is according to finance expert and new Football Insider columnist Kieran Maguire, speaking after Spurs, Southampton and Liverpool all too signed the commitment to move towards zero-carbon in January.

But it was Arsenal who blazed a trail in this regard, becoming the first team to join the initiative in November last year.

They have something of a poster boy for the cause in right-back Hector Bellerin, who has been vocal in promoting a number of measures to combat climate change.

And Maguire believes there is a genuine financial as well as ethical motivation for Arsenal and others joining the pact.

“There are incentives on a variety of levels,” he told Football Insider correspondent Adam Williams.

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“First of all, from the sponsorship point of view, if you’re trying to attract sponsors who are familiar and supportive of greener projects and more environmentally friendly institutions, that’s a tick in your box. You’re more likely to get that deal over the line.

“If two teams are competing for a commercial deal and one of them has got a green tick in terms of climate change and the other one hasn’t, you’re more likely to get it.

“Secondly, from a corporate governance point of view, Arsenal do see themselves as progressive. A significant portion of their fanbase, particularly given the gentrification of football fans in general, will be sympathetic to these kinds of ideals provided it can be done at a relatively low cost.

“When I looked at the Brighton annual report, there was a whole page on green initiatives. That shows you the direction we’re headed.”

Arsenal have implemented a number of green initiatives in recent years.

They became the first club in the Premier League to switch to 100% renewable energy in 2018 and have planted nearly 30,000 trees around the clubs training ground since 1999.

In other news, a former Arsenal man has heaped praise on the club’s latest signing after he made his debut against Aston Villa.