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Is Gambling Sponsorship In Football Really Coming To An End?

Sponsorship in football has travelled through many eras. But when it landed in the gambling realm, it looked set for the long term because of the amount of money brands from the sector were willing to pay. Fast forward to the present day, and there’s an upcoming ban on front-of-shirt gambling sponsors in the Premier League, but does this really signal the end of this relationship?

Football has always been big business. Every year, the English Premier League surpasses all expectations in terms of players' wages, broadcasting rights deals and even when looking at Premier League betting online, the numbers are growing year on year. So you can see why gambling brands wanted in on the act, and they’ve flourished as a result, but sponsorship in its most lucrative form for these companies is coming to an end.

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An agreement was made by the Premier League and Premier League clubs that there’d be no front-of-short gambling sponsors from the 2025/26 campaign onwards. It’s a decision that’s been made due to concerns over gambling and that it’s being promoted to vulnerable people and young people by being visible on the front of shirts in English football’s leading division.

It's said that this decision could see clubs lose out on up to £50 million per year unless a new sector comes on the scene like the gambling industry did and, uses football as a vehicle to advertise, and is willing to spend similar amounts of cash. At the beginning of the current Premier League season, there were still seven clubs, which makes up a third of the total number playing in the division, sporting gambling sponsors front of shirt.

For the amount of money gambling brands have been willing to invest in sponsorship arrangements with clubs plying their trade in England’s top flight, they naturally want to be front and centre and have as much exposure as possible. But the ban that prevents front-of-shirt sponsors being from the gambling sector will arguably prevent these brands from getting exactly what they’re looking for in line with any investment.

However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that there won’t be other ways for gambling companies to remain involved in football, albeit to a lesser extent on both the exposure and investment fronts. But this may not be feasible for either party because the money available for clubs via this avenue may not be at the level they’re looking for.

For now, gambling sponsorship in football remains. And it will remain as a front-of-shirt sponsor, no doubt, until the ban is enforced at the start of the 2025/26 season. The likelihood is that even beyond that date, there will still be commercial relationships between Premier League football clubs and gambling brands, but how they will look is anyone’s guess up to now. It’s more likely that other avenues will be explored post haste to try and find alternative arrangements that are on par with what the gambling sector has provided for so long.

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