Nike is to launch its biggest ever poster campaign in the run-up to the
Euro ’96 football championships, using the faces of some of Europe’s
most famous players.
The pounds 1.5 million campaign, through Simons Palmer, breaks next week
and comprises four executions, two of which will run on 48-sheet posters
and two 96-sheet posters.
It sees the return of Eric Cantona, who is pictured looking suitably
moody in a 96-sheet poster with the copyline, ‘I have worked hard to
improve English football. Now it is time to destroy it.’
A second execution shows the Newcastle United team-mates, Les Ferdinand
and David Ginola, facing each other with their national flags, with the
strapline, ‘Friendship expires 6/96’.
The man who put Ireland out of Euro ’96 and Jack Charlton into
retirement, the Ajax star, Patrick Kluivert, guns for Terry Venables in
the third execution with the plain message: ‘Venables, quit now.’
The fourth poster features Italy’s Paolo Maldini, one of the world’s
best defenders, with the line, ‘Italy’s goalkeeper: easiest job in
Robert Senior, a director on the Nike account at Simons Palmer, said the
deliberately provocative campaign underscores what Euro ’96 will be all
about: ‘The campaign tries to capture the reality of Euro ’96, and it is
about winning - above friendship, team-mates and everything else. It is
about the battle for victory over all other commitments.’
He added: ‘Take Cantona. He has been voted England’s player of the year,
but when it comes to Euro ’96 he will be behind France. It is the same
for us, on the terraces and in front of our TVs - we want England to win
and that is what the campaign is about.’
The ads will appear outside all six grounds where the group games are
The four poster ads were produced by two teams at Simons Palmer, one
comprising the copywriter, Rob Jack, and his art director partner, Simon
Roseblade, and the other Paul Shearer and Glenn Gibbins.
Planning for the campaign started early this year so that Nike’s media
shop, Manning Gottlieb Media, could secure good sites.