Ipswich Town has unveiled Ed Sheeran as the new shirt sponsor of its men’s and women’s teams.
The music icon, who lives in Suffolk and is an Ipswich fan, has signed a one-year sponsorship deal with the club, which includes its League One men's side and part-time women's outfit.
Announcing the news on Thursday, Ipswich unveiled a unique logo which will be worn by the players across their shirts from next season, featuring five different mathematical symbols accompanied with the word 'tour'. Further details on what the logo represents are set to be revealed in due course.
Sheeran’s involvement comes a month after the club announced it would be taken over by Gamechanger 20, a group that includes three American board members of the US club Phoenix Rising, in a move thought to be worth about £40m.
The era-defining artist said: “The football club is a big part of the local community and this is my way of showing my support. I have always enjoyed my trips to Portman Road and I’m looking forward to going back there as soon as supporters are allowed into stadiums again.
"With the new owners from the US coming in, there are sure to be exciting times ahead for Ipswich fans, including myself.”
Sheeran is known for his long-standing affinity with Suffolk and his boyhood club. His record-breaking Divide tour concluded in August 2019 in front of 160,000 people over four nights at Ipswich's Chantry Park and a commemorative Ipswich Town shirt was sold to mark the event.
The sponsorship also marks a considerable boost for Ipswich Town's fully amateur women’s side, which has a burgeoning under-21’s academy and currently plays in the FA Women’s National League South East division, the fourth tier of women’s football.
Reacting to the news, the women’s arm of the club, which was knocked out in the fifth round of last year’s FA Cup in a 10-0 defeat to Manchester City, tweeted: “Things you love to see! Great to have you on board, E.”
Asked what the logo on the front of the shirt stands for, Sheeran said: "All will be revealed in time."