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UK Could Ban Gambling Sponsorship In Sport


UK Could Ban Gambling Sponsorship In Sport

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he Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport (DCMS) in the UK could consider banning gambling sponsorship in sport after launching a review of UK gambling laws.

According to reports from the Guardian, the DCMS is set to examine almost every area of the Gambling Act 2005, covering marketing and advertising laws that cover sponsorship for English football clubs.

This review could threaten the already challenged financial stability of English football, with half of the clubs in the English Premier League having a gambling brand as a main or sleeve sponsor this year, totalling $117 million in shirt sponsorship deals.

The English Football League (EFL) released a statement earlier in the year asking for protection of its clubs ability to have major sponsorships with gambling organisations, claiming the revenue generated will ensure the survival of the clubs through COVID-19.

“With over UK£40 million a season paid by the sector to the league and its clubs, the significant contribution betting companies make to the ongoing financial sustainability of professional football at all levels is as important now as it has ever been, particularly given the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic which is leaving many of our clubs living on a financial knife edge,” the EFL statement said.

Across England’s second-tier football competition, the Championship, 15 of the 24 teams rely on betting companies for major shirt sponsorships.

The DCMS review is currently in the stage of an initial call for evidence, with the review only having begun earlier this week,

Elsewhere in the EFL, the league has announced Tottenham director of soccer operations, Trevor Birch, will become the new CEO on January 1, replacing David Baldwin, who stepped down in October after only starting in the role in June.

EFL chairman, Rick Parry, said Birch’s experience across top UK football clubs including as a chief executive for Chelsea, Leeds, Sheffield United, and Derby, will prove valuable.

“I am delighted to be able to welcome Trevor Birch to the EFL,” Parry said.

“Trevor’s vast experience has impressed me throughout our discussions in regards to the role, and having been a strong candidate in 2019 before withdrawing from the process, I am delighted that he has opted to take up the position and is able to join the league so promptly.

“I thank [Tottenham chairman] Daniel Levy for his understanding in this respect.

“I have known Trevor for many years and value the knowledge and expertise he has accumulated working with notable clubs at all levels of the game including a number of clubs in financial distress.

“I have no doubt that his acumen and experience will prove valuable for the EFL as we look to navigate our way out of the unprecedented set of circumstances presented to us by COVID-19 alongside considering the challenges of future reform to the pyramid as we look to develop long-term sustainability in the EFL,” he said.

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