Mitre, the UK sports equipment company, will continue as the official ball supplier for competitions organized by English soccer’s Football Association (FA) after renewing its partnership with the governing body for another three years.
The partnership extension – it first started in 2018 – will see Mitre’s Ultimax Pro balls used across the FA’s iconic men’s and women’s FA Cup, the FA Vase and FA Trophy lower-tier cup competitions, as well as the Golden Ball Awards, until the end of the 2026-27 season.
The balls will display the respective competition logo, with the Emirates FA Cup, and the Women’s FA Cup balls each receiving a creative, bespoke new design launched today.
NIKE, the US sportswear giant, was the FA’s previous ball supplier for the competitions before Mitre took over in 2018. The FA then extended its deal with Mitre for three years in November 2021 until the end of the 2023-24 season.
As part of that renewal, Mitre had the option to extend its partnership for a further three seasons, which it has taken up now.
Stephen Hutchinson, the FA’s head of commercial partnerships, said: “We’ve really valued this relationship with Mitre since they came on board, so we’re very happy to extend our partnership.
“Mitre shares the desire for our competitions to maintain the highest standards, and their track record as football suppliers to both the game in England historically and us throughout this period has been outstanding.”
Mitre had been the official match ball supplier for the English Football League, covering the Championship, League One, League Two, the League Cup, and EFL Trophy, for 45 years until the 2021-22 season when it was replaced by German sports apparel brand Puma in a long-term deal.
Simon Rowe, vice president of global sports marketing at Mitre’s parent company Pentland Brand, added: “At our core, we are a brand dedicated to our fans, and we firmly believe the beautiful game should always start with a beautiful ball.
“Today we proudly introduce the new Emirates FA Cup Ultimax Pro ball and Women’s FA Cup ball designs. Players and fans can expect the same game-changing technology coupled with a levelled-up retro design that encapsulates Mitre’s iconic past through the current football scene.”
The men’s FA Cup starts for EFL sides on November 4 and will run until May 25, 2024. The women’s FA Cup, meanwhile, begins on November 12 and will end with a final on either May 11 or 12, 2024.
The current FA Cup title sponsor, until the end of this season, is the Emirates airline.