According to a Sportsmail article, a review of the 2005 Gambling Act will result in the prohibition of gambling sponsorship agreements with Premier League football clubs.
This will ban betting and gaming company logos from appearing on the front of team shirts, which have been a long-standing marketing component of the Premier League, with nine top-flight clubs now doing so.
Pitchside advertising and television marketing will reportedly be reviewed as part of the review, while clubs competing in the English Football League will reportedly be unaffected, since lawmakers are concerned about the financial impact of the ban on the lesser leagues.
“We are pretty sure there is going to be an end to front-of-shirt advertising. Everybody is expecting that,” a source close to the review told the Mail.
More is desired by reformers, although many politicians are concerned about the lesser leagues. The government believes that the front of the shirt will make headlines and that it will appear as if it has made a bold statement.”
Chris Philp, who took over as gambling minister from John Whittingdale earlier this week, is now in charge of completing the review of the Gambling Act. One of the new minister’s main responsibilities is likely to be to coordinate the sponsorship ban’s implementation.
Prior to the establishment of the £2 stake limit in 2019, the Croydon South MP campaigned for greater regulation of fixed-odds betting terminals, indicating that he may take a harder position on the business than his predecessors when conducting the review.
First of a series of reforms
Imogen Moss, a gambling industry and regulatory expert at solicitors Poppleston Allen, commented on the recent development, speculating that the end of front-of-shirt sponsorships could be the first of a series of reforms, alluding to Spain’s outright prohibition of any form of domestic commercial relationship between the gambling industry and football.
“Given the DCMS have been clear that the review’s purpose is to overhaul regulations to ensure they’re fit for the digital age, banning a traditional form of advertising like shirt sponsorship might not be where marketing reform ends.
“Betting brands should now also consider how they market to a football audience via digital means too, with the sweeping changes in Spain – spanning social media and television advertising among other channels – showing the extent of how far governments and regulators can go.”