Npower could be set to replace Coca-Cola and become the new sponsor of The Football League, according to The Sun.
The energy supplier is rumoured to be in talks over a three-year, £9million deal that would begin this summer. The agreement would see the energy company ditch its long-term sponsorship of domestic Test match cricket next year.
The Football League are said to be worried they may have to accept a cheaper deal as the UK struggles to pull out of the worst economic downturn in living memory.
This would put yet more pressure on the finances of clubs at the lower end of the football pyramid. The current package covers the three divisions below the Premiership — the Championship, League One and League Two.
Talks to find a successor to Coca-Cola began in September when the American soft drinks giant said it was pulling out at the end of the this season.
Npower — owned by German energy giant RWE — sees the sponsorship as an ideal way to launch a huge rebranding exercise later this year.
A Npower spokesman: "We talk to lots of business partners and about lots of different things. It would be wrong to comment on one in particular."