Betting Sponsors To Be Banned From Football Shirts in Great Britain?

Great Britain political party Labour wants to ban betting firms from sponsoring football shirts. Gambling on football was worth a record £1.4bn to bookmakers over a 12-month period, while figures of the Gambling Commission indicated a rise in the number of problem gamblers to 430,000.

Last month, the FA ended a £4 million a year contract with Ladbrokes as part of plans to end sponsorship deals with betting firms. The Labour Party was most recently in government from 1997 to 2010.

Labour Wants to Ban Betting Sponsors From Football Shirt




Football clubs would be banned from signing shirt sponsorship deals with betting companies under a Labour government, as the party pledges to tackle a "hidden epidemic" of addiction and protect children from early exposure to gambling. The new policy is reported to be the first of a series of proposals against gambling firms to put pressure on the government ahead of its own review of the industry.

"Football has to play its part in tackling Britain's hidden epidemic of gambling addiction," Labour deputy leader Watson said. "Shirt sponsorship sends out a message that football clubs don't take problem gambling among their own fans seriously enough. It puts gambling brands in front of fans of all ages, not just at matches but on broadcasts and highlights packages on both commercial television and the BBC."

Nine of the 20 Premier League football clubs have shirt sponsorship deals with gambling companies, worth £47.3m this season alone. 16 further clubs in England's second and third tiers have similar deals.

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"Shirt sponsorship sends out a message that football clubs don't take problem gambling among their own fans seriously enough," he said. It puts gambling brands in front of fans of all ages, not just at matches but on broadcasts and highlights packages on both commercial television and the BBC."

Labour said rules banning gambling adverts on under-18s teams' shirts should be extended to all sides under the Football Association's remit. Watson also drew a comparison with laws passed in 2005 to stop cigarette firms sponsoring sport.

"Just as tobacco companies were banned from sponsoring sporting events and putting their logos on branded goods because of the harm smoking can cause," he said, "it's right that we recognise the harm problem gambling does and take gambling logos off football shirts."

Should betting sponsors be banned from football shirts? Let us know in the comments below.