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Customised buses – football’s friend or foe?

It’s common knowledge that football is a billion-pound-business these days. From shirt sponsorships and advertising hoardings to colossal television deals and multi-million pound transfers, the world’s favourite sport is seeing clubs and players seemingly get richer and richer.

Sadly, though, this rule doesn’t seem to be applying to struggling Italian giants AC Milan right now. The seven-time European champions have been mercilessly mocked on social media over the past week after news surfaced of their decision to sell their customised team bus for around €150,000 in order to cut costs. As expected, Twitter users were quick to ridicule Milan, with some very creative alternative travel suggestions…

Collage featuring the customised bus, the team photoshopped to hitch hike,a Royal carriage and Flintstones car.
Milan’s sold bus (top left) and some alternative travel plans…

It’s not the first time that a football team bus has caused a social media stir, either. Last year saw images leak prematurely online of a bus decked out in Arsenal’s colours, sponsors and messages congratulating the team on their FA Cup victory over Hull City – before the game had even been played. Granted, both sides had probably prepared one in advance due to time constraints, and Arsenal’s blushes were spared after a 3-2 win.

'The FA cup winners 2014' prematurely emblazoned on rear of team bus.
Arsenal’s FA Cup bus and parade plan was exposed before a ball had been kicked

Looking to follow in the footsteps of Premier League open top bus parades, an amateur Sunday league side from Colchester decided to get in on the act, hiring a bus – and a few balloons – to celebrate their own success with their adoring fans (who sadly didn’t turn up. Or exist.)

Old school double decker bus, banner states DUCKPOND FC with the team cheering from the open top.
Is that Real Madrid? Barcelona? No, it’s the mighty Duckpond FC

Oh dear. Perhaps next time ‘Duckpond FC’ should leave their bus campaigns in the hands of Transport Media