PARIS (AP) – A Greek soccer team has found a novel way to drum up money in these tough economic times: by going right to the oldest profession.
Voukefalas, a minor-league club from Larissa, have signed a shirt sponsorship deal with a local brothel.
"When we announced to the players that our sponsor would be a brothel, they wanted to know about bonuses," the club's president Giannis Batziolas told local radio station NovaSport FM. "The proposal was made strictly for economic reasons. As soon as the offer was made, we couldn't turn it down."
Batziolas added that the Soula brothel was an entirely legal business, valued at some two million euros.
Greek soccer has been hard hit by the economic downturn in their country, and Voukefala are not the only club to turn to unusual sponsors. Another club, Paleopyrgo, signed a deal with a local undertaker.
"It was a matter of survival. The owner of the funeral home is a friend and we agreed," Paleopyrgo general manager Lefteris Vasiliou also told NovaSport FM.
"The previous season was very difficult for us with the economic crisis. We did not have a sponsor for the last three years.
Their jerseys, adorned with a black cross, have become hot sellers.