Posted: 18.03.24

Sports Interactive Help Partners AFC Wimbledon to Don New Kit for Charity

Sports Interactive Help Partners AFC Wimbledon to Don New Kit for Charity
Studio, club and charity collaborate on special edition kit and fundraising event

Bringing their partnerships to the fore, Sports Interactive has united War Child with AFC Wimbledon to create a bespoke one-off kit to raise money for children affected by conflict.

The partnership between Sports Interactive and AFC Wimbledon dates back to the club’s reformation in 2002 and has been defined by the studio’s sponsorship of the club’s shirts – the longest-running agreement of its kind in English football. 

However, when Johnnie Jackson’s players run out at the Cherry Red Records Stadium, Plough Lane, against Harrogate Town on Friday, March 29th, Football Manager branding will not appear.

That’s because the studio and club have agreed to a shirt takeover which will see War Child, a longstanding charity partner of Sports Interactive who receive a percentage of every copy of Football Manager sold, come in as sleeve sponsors for a special one-off kit with an iconic design.

Two days prior (Wednesday, March 27th), one of these shirts will be signed by the first team squad and given away at a special fundraising night held by AFC Wimbledon and Sports Interactive at Plough Lane.

The remaining shirts will be auctioned through the Match Worn Shirt platform and all the money raised from those sales, as well as during the event on March 27th, will go to War Child and the AFC Wimbledon Foundation.

The fundraising night will showcase the history of both the studio and the club over the last 21 years. Attendees will hear from Ivor Heller, one of AFC Wimbledon’s founder members, and Sports Interactive Studio Director Miles Jacobson, as well as some famous faces from the club’s past.

Miles Jacobson, Sports Interactive Studio Director, said: “Recent world events have made the work that War Child do, and the difference they make to children’s lives, more important than ever.

“As an ambassador of the charity, it’s an honour and privilege to be involved in their work. With what is happening in the world at the moment, War Child’s work is more important than ever, so it’s great that we can give them a different platform for them to talk about what they do to more people.

“We first got involved with AFC Wimbledon due to the vision the passionate fans had to start a fan-owned, fan-driven club back in 2002. It’s been incredible to be involved in their journey over the past 21 years.

“Now we get the chance to mark that partnership with a pair of events that not only celebrates our partnerships with both AFC Wimbledon and War Child, but also raises money to change the lives of vulnerable people both at home and further afield – and this is just the beginning of what we want to do with the collaboration.”

Andrew Stead, Head of Commercial at AFC Wimbledon, said: “We are delighted to be hosting both of these events, in partnership with long-term front-of-shirt sponsors Sports Interactive, supporting two fantastic charities – War Child and AFC Wimbledon Foundation.

“There are few partnerships in world football that have spanned two decades and we’re incredibly grateful to Miles and his team for their continued support.

“As well as the fundraising event supporting such great causes, it’ll celebrate the wonderful partnership we’ve had with SI. All of our shirts will be on display from 2002 onwards and a host of fantastic guests, including those who have made immense contributions to the Club and helped the partnership to grow, will be attending.

“We hope that all attendees will dig deep and support these fantastic causes on what promises to be an amazing evening.”

War Child’s spokesperson said: “We are honoured to be included in this celebration of AFC Wimbledon and Sports Interactive’s 21-year partnership. Sports Interactive and their incredible Football Manager series of games have helped to raise a very significant amount of money and awareness for War Child’s work supporting children in conflict zones around the world. We are extremely grateful to be included in this moment and we would like to extend our thanks to Miles and everyone at Sports Interactive and AFC Wimbledon.”