Sport clubs sponsored by gambling companies.

March 19, 2020 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

Most fans of the top flight in British football spend a lot of money to follow their respective clubs. There’re the tickets to games, club memberships, merchandise, TV subscriptions and of course; betting. Sports betting has reached heights it has hitherto never seen, due to the new social media markets and its easy accessibility from smartphone apps.

You’ve heard of the big gambling names; William Hill, Ladbrokes, Bet Fred etc. But have you heard of ManBetX? LoveBet? What about M88? 

You’ve probably never used these sports betting services, but you’ve seen them on the shirts of teams such as Crystal Palace, Burnley and Bournemouth.

Half of the teams within the Premier League are sponsored by gambling/sports betting companies, most of which are based in South East Asia and some don’t even have websites in English. This is due to the marketability to the Asian market of the Premier League, not to mention the idea that most people who bet on sports watch them religiously. Where else is the ideal place to advertise sports betting than within the sport itself?

Big sponsorship for big team

If you’re a top-flight team, you need the biggest sponsorship deal you get offered to you, so that the money can fund the season’s signings. Bournemouth have beaten Liverpool in the largest net spend on players since 2015, spending £151 Million. The only reason a team such as Bournemouth can stay in the Premier League, is by spending this amount of money. Since 2015, they’ve been sponsored by gambling site M88, previously named Mansion.

Unfortunately for clubs such as Bournemouth, this could come to an abrupt end.

Campaigners the Big Step are to deliver a letter to the prime minister urging the government to ban gambling advertising within football. The letter features all the ways in which betting companies have saturated themselves within the football league.

Although it’s true that 27 of the 44 teams in the Premier League and Championship being sponsored by betting companies is quite high, the logo of a company on a shirt doesn’t make people go out to betting shops and gamble. Just because Manchester United is sponsored by Chevrolet, doesn’t make United fans go out and buy Chevrolets.  

At the start of the season, Paddy Power pulled the ultimate advertising stunt that sent fans into a frenzy. As Huddersfield announced their new kit’s look, it featured a large sash emblazoned on its front featuring the Paddy Power logo. 

Huddersfield’s fans were furious, until it was announced that the Paddy Power sash will only feature in a pre-season friendly. For the rest of the season, the sponsor had removed their logo and the shirt had a retro-appeal. It’s because of sponsors such as Paddy Power, a betting company, that football gets the funding and attention it deserves. 

Although it’s true that the football league needs to limit the sheer amount of betting advertising (usually on gambling websites and casinos affiliates), it’s completely idiotic to get rid of sports betting advertisers altogether. Sports betting will exist whether it’s advertised or not, and generates enough revenue to change football for the better.

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