updated 8/16/2007 5:33:40 PM ET 2007-08-16T21:33:40

Bank of America Corp.’s deal to become the bank of the National Football League could also be a touchdown for MasterCard Inc.

Bank of America, the nation’s second-largest bank by assets, is the largest issuer of debit cards in the United States, and for the first time will be issuing MasterCard debit cards.

Debit is currently a faster-growing U.S. market segment than credit, and one that financial companies are increasingly tapping.

“Debit, from a payment perspective, is important. More and more consumers are using debit, day in, day out,” said Gary Flood, president of global key accounts for MasterCard, the world’s No. 2 credit card franchise behind Visa.

Charlotte-based Bank of America, which is based in Charlotte, N.C., in the past issued only Visa-branded debit cards. In January it made a pricing arrangement with MasterCard, too.

Now the bank said it will issue both MasterCard and Visa debit cards with NFL team logos as part of the deal that made Bank of America the NFL’s exclusive sponsor for banking and related financial services for three years.

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