Manchester City have got into bed with dating app Tinder in a multi-year, multi-million pound partnership.
Pep Guardiola’s side met their match in Liverpool on Wednesday evening, with a 3-0 quarter-final defeat leaving them facing the prospect of being dumped out of the Champions League.
But spirits will be raised ahead of the second leg if City beat Manchester United this Saturday to wrap up the Premier League title – a chance to take a swipe at Jose Mourinho’s men and for Tinder to help launch its first in-depth foray into the sports market.
The dating app has agreed a multi-year sponsorship with City’s men’s and women’s teams, along with City Football Group sister club New York City FC of Major League Soccer.
The unique partnership, which PA Sport understands to be a multi-million pound deal, was being celebrated on Thursday by a giant blimp with Tinder and City branding flying over Manchester.
Tinder is also switching its colours across social platforms to City blue ahead of the derby.
Tom Glick, chief commercial officer of City Football Group, said: “Tinder is a huge global platform which, just like football, is bringing millions of people together every day all around the world.
“Football is all about a community of fans, sharing moments, emotions and passion for the sport they love.
“Together with Tinder, we have a great opportunity to explore how we can combine Tinder’s significant appeal and reach with our global audience to create even more relationships in a new, fun and creative way.
“We believe this will be a perfect match for Tinder and for City.”
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Earlier this season Tinder reportedly had discussions with rivals Manchester United about shirt sleeve sponsorship.
But “the world’s most popular app for meeting new people” has linked up with City to offers users and fans exclusive access to games along with events at the Etihad Stadium and other engagements.
The deal announcement describes how “with a strong millennial and digital focus, the partnership will engage football fans around the world”.
Tinder’s vice-president of partnerships David Wyler said: “Tinder’s global presence and highly engaged user base gives us a unique understanding of what people all over the world are passionate about.
“And they’ve made it clear that they have a love for sports, particularly football.
“Football is a sport where anything can happen at any moment. We wanted to be true to the game and do something unexpected by surprising the fans and our users with news of our partnership in a fun and creative way.”
Tinder was launched in 2012 and is used by people in more than 190 countries, with 26 million matches made every da