A section of Sutton United supporters reacted angrily to the club’s decision to agree a one-off sponsorship deal with The Sun’s betting site.

The five-figure arrangement with Sun Bets was criticised on Amber Planet, an unofficial fan forum.

Member ‘Amber Aleman’ said: “The club will already have made in the region of £1m from the Cup run, an unprecedented windfall for a club of our size, so I don’t see why there was a need to enter into this additional sponsorship agreement with what is, frankly, a tainted brand.

“As a supporter and shareholder, I want to place on record that I am deeply unhappy with this decision.”

A thread discussing the sponsorship was removed from the website by a moderator, allegedly at the request of Sutton United, on Monday, February 13.

The club, however, denied it had asked for the post to be taken down and added it did not have the power to close comments or ban people from fan-maintained sites.

A spokesman for the club said: “We respect other people’s views and that they may disagree with us about what we have done.

“We did not do the deal with a view to offend anyone, but if that’s how they view it then that’s how they view it. We have not done it for that reason”

The Sun has previously arranged one-off sponsorship deals with other teams. In 2011 then non-league outfit Crawley Town cashed in on their David and Goliath FA Cup tie against Manchester United after they reached an agreement with the tabloid.

But Sutton supporter George Kent said: “To me it’s fair game, but I do understand that it (the deal) has upset people.

"It’s a national newspaper read by a lot of people and they have done it before with other clubs. It’s not the first time it’s happened and it won’t be the last.

“Sutton are being used in a quasi-war with the BBC and the Sun. The game is going to be shown on the Beeb, but the players are going to have the paper’s sponsorship on their tops.

“I think the club will have been given advice to take the money and run and the money will go towards some good causes.

“It’s also only for one game and if we get through we can go with another sponsor and ask them for even more money, but for now we just have to go with it.”

A spokesman for Sun Bets said the company was proud to ‘help the club and play a small part in its fantastic journey.’ He added: "The Sun is the most-bought paper in Britain and second-most read online, partly thanks to our brilliant football coverage.

"Those who object to the partnership are a vocal minority and we encourage all Sutton fans to get behind the team as they push for victory against Arsenal."

Follow the FA Cup fifth-round tie on the Sutton Guardian website from 5pm today (Monday, February 20).

The match will be aired live from Gander Green Lane on BBC One from 7.55pm.