Premier League and Championship clubs will lose £110 million per year if a Government review of gambling, launched today, leads to a ban on betting companies sponsoring football shirts

Premier League and Championship clubs will lose £110 million per year if a Government review of gambling, launched today, leads to a ban on betting companies sponsoring football shirts.

Eight out of 20 clubs in the Premier League are currently dependent upon shirt sponsors from the gambling industry, which brings in around £70m.In addition, the EFL, clubs benefit from £40m in sponsorship and commercial arrangements with the league

In the Premier League this season, West Ham, Wolves, , Southampton, Leeds, , Newcastle and all have betting companies on the front of their shirts, while and West Bromwich Albion have gambling firms on their shirt sleeves.

More than half of clubs in the Premier League and Championship are sponsored by gambling firms, including West Ham (pictured)

More than half of clubs in the Premier League and Championship are sponsored by gambling firms, including West Ham (pictured)

But the financial hit for football from any changes to regulations will be even greater if the review leads to wider curbs on betting companies’ involvement.

Earlier this year, a House of Lords Select Committee on gambling recommended that not only should shirt sponsorship be banned by 2023, but ‘there should also be no gambling advertising in or near any sports grounds or sports venues’.

Currently betting company sponsorship includes, pitch side hoardings, partnerships and sponsorship of training kit.

Bookmakers are also still able to show television adverts during the build-up and post-match analysis on live televised sport.

Bookmakers are also still able to show television adverts during the build-up and post-match analysis on live televised sport

Bookmakers are also still able to show television adverts during the build-up and post-match analysis on live televised sport

The long-awaited review of the 2005 Gambling Act aims to update legislation to provide greater consumer protection in the digital age, which has seen the losses of punters rocket to £14.4 billion per year in 2019.

The review is driven by concern at the number of problem gamblers, which is estimated at 430,000 in Britain. and the pervasiveness of betting in sport, and football in particular.

Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Oliver Dowden, said: ‘Whilst millions gamble responsibly, the Gambling Act is an analogue law in a digital age.

‘From an era of having a flutter in a high street bookmaker, casino, racecourse or seaside pier, the industry has evolved at breakneck speed.

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    Since the 2005 Gambling Act, brought in by Tony Blair’s Labour government, more relaxed controls on betting, including allowing gambling companies to advertise on TV and radio, increased access online and a dramatic rise in the exposure of English football to international TV audiences has seen betting and the national game grow together.

    While eight Premier League teams have a betting company on the front of their shirts, a further two have betting logos on their sleeves.

    Some of those clubs that don’t have logos on their kit still partner with betting companies.In fact, only three Premier League teams — Liverpool, Chelsea and Sheffield United — are believed to have no commercial tie-in with gambling, according to the betting odds website, . 

    Crystal Palace are one of the eight Premier League sides sponsored by the gambling industry

    Crystal Palace are one of the eight Premier League sides sponsored by the gambling industry

    Gambling is now so entwined with football that an academic study in 2017 suggested betting company branding or logos were on-screen between 71% and 89% of BBC’s Match of the Day runtime.

    Another study found in matchday programmes for Premier League and Championship matches, gambling marketing was found on over 20% of pages and in over half of the child-specific sections.

    ManBetX sponsor Wolverhampton Wanderers in a deal believed to be worth £8m-a-year

    ManBetX sponsor Wolverhampton Wanderers in a deal believed to be worth £8m-a-year

    But Michael Dugher, chief executive of the Betting and Gaming Council, said gambling companies provide support to many sports.

    ‘I hope Ministers will focus in with laser-like precision on problem gamblers and those at risk.The Government must ensure that any changes do not drive people to the unregulated black market online, where there aren’t any safeguards to protect vulnerable people.’

    Mr Dugher said the gambling review must take into account the economic contribution of the industry, which includes, £3.2 billion to HM Treasury in tax, £350 million to horse through an industry levy, media rights and sponsorships, as well as commercial deals with rugby league, snooker, darts and football. 

    Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has launched a review of the law around gambling

    Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has launched a review of the law around gambling

    <div class="art-ins mol-factbox news" data-version="2" id="mol-eb7a3300-393b-11eb-b53d-27a6d3c1f594" website clubs to lose £110m if betting firms banned from shirts

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    Betting Company Premier League Shirt Sponsors 2019/20
    Club  Sponsor Value  (£m)
    West Ham United Betway  10
    Everton  SportPesa  9.6 
    Wolves  ManBetX 
    Burnley  LoveBet  7.5 
    Crystal Palace  ManBetX  6.5 
    Newcastle United  Fun88  6.5
    Watford  Sportsbet.io  6.5 
    Aston Villa  W88 
    Norwich City  Dafabet