Americans, here's your tax dollars at work: In the U.K., Liverpool's football team has just signed up Bank of America as a major sponsor. BofA, which has received about $45 billion in U.S. federal rescue money after its acquisition of Merrill Lynch and its toxic assets, is the parent of MBNA, which supplies Liverpool's credit card for supporters. (At the end of the year, MBNA announced major worldwide layoffs, so it's a safe bet many of those on the street might have liked a little of the cash that will now underwrite the careers of Bentley-driving footballers and their high-maintenance WAGs.) Liverpool, currently sitting at No. 3 in the U.K.'s Premier League, has a rich history, and wants to leverage its potential globally. (The club also demolished Real Madrid 4-0 in the Champions League on Tuesday.) Team manager Rafael Benitez has made no secret of his frustration that Liverpool doesn't get the same place on the world stage as Manchester United. But Liverpool already has deep pockets, with revenues of more than $277 million annually—hardly in need of a bailout money from the U.S. government.
—Posted by Noreen O'Leary