Nike are being linked with a £10 million-a-year deal to take the naming rights of Newcastle United's St James' Park.
The People says the firm's world-famous swoosh trademark could be adorning Newcastle United's old stadium and the team's shirts in time for Christmas as part of a potential five-year agreement.
Other leading US companies have expressed an interest since Toon owner, sportswear tycoon Ashley, announced that St James' Park would be known as the Sports Direct Arena until new sponsors could be found.
Financial experts have also talked up the likes of O2 and Virgin Money with the banking arm of Richard Branson's empire taking over Newcastle shirt sponsors Northern Rock this week.
But Nike - who employ 30,000 people globally - are the main contenders.
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