German discounter Lidl to sponsor England team

England's Harry Kane during training Action Images via Reuters / John Sibley Livepic

LONDON (Reuters) - The English football team has set aside decades of sporting rivalry with the Germans by signing up a new sponsor -- German discount supermarket Lidl [LIDUK.UL].

Lidl, which along with fellow German company Aldi [ALDIEI.UL] has been grabbing market share in Britain, said on Tuesday it would become “official supermarket of the England team”.

“Multimillion-pound” deals with the English Football Association (The FA), the Football Association of Wales (FAW) and the Scottish Football Association (Scottish FA) will also see Lidl become a grassroots partner of all three associations until 2018, financing professional coaching for children.

The deals were announced ahead of England’s friendly against France on Tuesday at Wembley Stadium, scene of England’s most famous victory -- a 4-2 win against West Germany in the 1966 World Cup final.

The Germans have since had their revenge at a number of major tournaments and Germany are the current world champions.

The investment by Lidl comes after Aldi signed up earlier this year to be “official” grocer of the British Olympics Team for next year’s Rio Olympics.

British supermarket Sainsbury’s sponsored the London Paralympics in 2012 and upmarket chain Waitrose [JLP.UL] sponsors the English cricket team.

Reporting by James Davey; Editing by Keith Weir