The Irish Examiner has learned the Czech company is currently in talks with a variety of public relations companies about promoting their commercial interests, which will include their upcoming venture with the Tipperary board.
Skoda were unavailable for comment yesterday while Tipperary secretary Tim Floyd has said the sponsorship issue could take a few weeks to finalise.
However, the agreement is believed to be imminent and could be announced before the All-Ireland champions’ Allianz League Division One opener against Kilkenny tomorrow week.
As reported earlier this week, the Tipperary footballers are set to start their Allianz League Division 3 league campaign in Semple Stadium on Sunday without a sponsor on their jerseys.
As both they and the hurlers have done in recent games, they will wear jerseys with Tiobraid Árann emblazoned across the chest where the sponsor’s logo would be.
The deal with Skoda will bring to an end Tipperary’s nine-year relationship with Enfer.
The board and the Clonmel-based company had been in re-negotiation talks about their existing contract, which had been expected to be run this year.
However, Tipperary are understood to be keen to maximise their value after winning last year’s All-Ireland SHC title.
Meanwhile, Tipperary will have to plan without attacker Seamus Callanan for the majority of their National Hurling League campaign after he broke his collarbone while lining out for Limerick IT in the Fitzgibbon Cup on Wednesday afternoon.
Callanan suffered the injury in the seventh minute of the clash against Waterford IT and after being treated by medics on the pitch, his left arm was placed in a sling and he was lead off the pitch.
The Drom-Inch player was transferred to hospital in Limerick after the game where the extent of his injury was confirmed. Callanan’s stay in hospital was brief as he had suffered a clean break and he was released shortly afterwards.
It is envisaged that he will definitely be sidelined for at least six weeks and his rate of recovery will determine whether he may be able to come back into the frame for Tipperary’s closing league games against Galway and Wexford.
The injury is a massive blow for the 22 year-old who lost his starting place in Tipperary’s forward line last season but still made a key contribution to their All-Ireland triumph as he grabbed 0-2 when introduced in the decider against Kilkenny.
New Tipperary manager Declan Ryan, who was present in Moylish for Wednesday’s third-level tie, will now have his opportunities restricted to view Callanan in action before the Munster championship opener on May 29th.
Callanan will also be a major loss to LIT manager Davy Fitzgerald’s Fitzgibbon Cup plans as he is now ruled out for the remainder of the competition.
LIT booked their berth in the last eight of the Fitzgibbon Cup with that 1-13 to 0-13 triumph over WIT but must gain at least a point against UCD next Tuesday to ensure home advantage for the knockout stages.
Full-back Ciaran Cowan will be fit for that game despite colliding with a goalpost in injury-time of Wednesday’s match.
Meanwhile, Cork manager Conor Counihan have included 10 of last year’s All-Ireland winning side in his team to face Kerry on Sunday as they begin the defence of their Allianz League Division One.
Fintan Goold is the only change in the attack as Paul Kerrigan is currently committed to Nemo Rangers.
Ken O’Halloran comes in for the injured Alan Quirke in goal while John Miskella fills Graham Canty’s spot at centre-back.
Kerry themselves have named a strong line-up with the Ó Sé brothers forming the spine of the defence. Anthony Maher and David Moran continue their partnership at midfield.
Sunday’s game in Austin Stack Park marks the start of TG4’s live Allianz League coverage.
The Irish language broadcasters yesterday announced their spring schedule, which will also feature the All-Ireland club championships, the All-Ireland U21 championship and the Sigerson and Fitzgibbon Cups.
Elsewhere, Seán Cavanagh has been named at wing-forward for Tyrone’s Division Two trip to Derry.
CORK (v Kerry): K O’Halloran; R Carey, J O’Sullivan, E Cadogan; C O’Driscoll, J Miskella, N O’Leary; A O’Connor, A Walsh; P Kelly, P O’Neill, F Goold; D Goulding, D O’Connor, C O’Neill.
KERRY (v Cork): B Kealy; P Reidy, M Ó Sé, P O’Connor; A O’Mahony, T Ó Sé, J Lyne; A Maher, D Moran; BJ Keane, D O’Sullivan, D Walsh, BJ Walsh, K Donaghy, D Geaney.
TYRONE (v Derry): P McConnell; D Carlin, C McCarron, D McCaul; D Harte, C Gormley, R McMenamin; K Hughes, A Cassidy; P Harte, B McGuigan, S Cavanagh; M Penrose, S O’Neill, E McGinley.
Sunday: NFL, Kerry v Cork (live); Monaghan v Galway (deferred); Feb 13: NHL: Galway v Wexford (live); Waterford v Dublin (deferred); Feb 20: NHL: Kilkenny v Cork (live); NFL: Mayo v Kerry (deferred); Feb 27: NFL Galway v Mayo (live); March 6: NHL games (TBC); March 13: NFL and NHL games (TBC); March 20: NFL games (TBC); March 27: NHL games (TBC); April 3: NHL games (TBC); April 10: NFL games (TBC); April 17: NHL games (TBC);
April 23: NFL finals (Division 3 and 4); April 24: NFL finals (Division 1 and 2); May 1: NHL finals (Division 1 and 2).