Liverpool and Netherlands captain Virgil van Dijk has been named Heineken’s latest brand ambassador in a multi-year agreement. Van Dijk, who will join former Lioness Jill Scott MBE as an ambassador for the brand, will also lead Heineken’s latest campaign ‘Cheers to the real hardcore fans’, which aims to tackle negative fan stereotypes.
The campaign was launched with a TV commercial and social media promotions. Van Dijk’s endorsement deal was arranged by the newly launched sports marketing and content production agency Quattro Sports Group, which was established by Duncan Ross and Steven Halliwell. The agency intends to work with a range of athletes and brands across various sports, focusing on all off-pitch marketing activity including sponsorship, content production, media and PR, and broadcast management.
In a statement, Van Dijk said “The ‘Real Hardcore’ fans make me proud and appreciative as a player. I think reclaiming this phrase is important, the historic negative connotations are something we need to remove from the game, no one is born a racist. I think the key things to make change are education and communicating with each other.”
The deal comes ahead of this year’s round of 16 matches in the Uefa Champions League, where Heineken has been a sponsor for many years. If you are interested in the sports industry, be sure to join SportsPro Live in London this April for insights into successful monetisation, audience engagement, and environmental and social responsibility. Get your pass now!