Tony Bloom is pushing for a ban on gaming shirt sponsorships

Image source: (photo by Janosch Diggelmann)

Professional player and Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club owner and chairman Tony Bloom has voiced his support for a ban on Premier League game shirt sponsorships. Bloom explained his position by talking about the need to further protect young people and vulnerable players from the harms and potential risks of gambling.

“There is still a place for gambling advertising”

While discussing the need to ban the most popular form of advertising used in the world of sports betting, Bloom added that there is still a place for gambling advertising during in-game hours. The successful poker player and sports bettor stressed the need to protect vulnerable viewers from the dangers of overexposure. He added that children should not be exposed to advertisements about gambling and betting on players’ shirts during official matches as they are likely to buy the same shirts to show their support for their favorite teams.

Bloom, a father-of-two, has made it clear that while Brighton & Hove Albion are not at all “against gambling or betting”, they support the need to protect children from the associated risks. Bloom explained that the club carefully manages its own gambling advertising, being careful about where its adverts are placed while being “a bit more careful than some other clubs”.

While Brighton have chosen online gambling operator Betway as their official global betting partner, they have also decided to stay away from sponsorship deals with them.

A hotly debated topic

The issue of sponsorship advertisements on gambling shirts has been one of the most debated topics in the upcoming review of the Gambling Act White Paper 2005. Many people expect this that the ban is revolutionary and will bring about a significant change in the legislation and the gambling industry itself. However, there are also reports that claim that the actual ban on gambling sponsorship could come into force in the form of a voluntary vote by football clubs that are part of the Premier League. As part of the respective vote, jersey sponsorship deals would be abolished by the next 2024-25 season.

The decision would not affect stadium and perimeter advertising, however. The club vote has already been postponed by the Premier League until the end of July due to the current crisis the government is going through following the recent resignation of Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Gambling minister Chris Philp has also tendered his resignation, putting the white paper at risk of not being published before parliament goes into recess for the summer.

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