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APAC football fans rate fast food and alcohol sponsors as bad for the beautiful game

McDonald's sponsoring World CupEuro 2016 CarlsbergFootball fans in Asia think that snack food and alcohol brands are bad for the sport, even though these companies spend millions to support the beautiful game through sponsorship and advertising.

The likes of McDonald’s, Carlsberg, Budweiser, Pepsi and Coca-Cola were considered exploitative to football and fans in a regional survey by YouGov for Football Inc, while sportswear brands Adidas, Nike and Puma were seen as beneficial.

Burger chain McDonald’s, which is a FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2016 sponsor, is considered the most harmful brand for football by fans in Singapore, Australia and Indonesia, while beer brand Carlsberg, which is also sponsoring this summer’s Euros tournament in France, was bottom of the pile in Malaysia, Hong Kong and Thailand.

Coke, which is a World Cup sponsor, and Pepsi, which is not, both rate poorly in Hong Kong, Australia, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Fast food and alcohol brands need to be thinking harder about their messaging around football, Andy Jackson, global brand director at FourFourTwo, said. “The activations these brands are doing just aren’t changing people’s minds,” he said.

The national heritage of a brand may also influence how a football fan’s perception, with Middle Eastern companies Qatar Airways and Emirates rated as bad for football in the US, and Japanese car brand Nissan considered the worst brand for football in China.

Adidas was rated as the best brand for football in every APAC market in the study, with Nike rating second is most markets followed by Puma.

The Football Inc Fan Index was based on 8,264 online interviews during January and February 2016.

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