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Premier League’s Ban on Gambling Sponsors on Matchday Shirts Hailed as Positive Step by Campaigners

Campaigners have hailed the Premier League’s decision to withdraw gambling sponsorship from the front of matchday shirts as “a step in the right direction”. The charity GambleAware, which aims to tackle the harms caused by gambling, has welcomed the move, acknowledging that it could go further in combating the issue. The organization’s chief executive, Zoe Osmond, emphasized that gambling can affect anyone and that this is why they have launched a new campaign to combat stigma and encourage open conversation around gambling harms.

The Premier League has agreed to ban gambling companies from sponsoring the front of matchday shirts, with the new rule set to come into effect at the end of the 2025-26 season. Currently, eight Premier League clubs have gambling companies as their front-of-shirt sponsors, and they will be allowed to secure new sponsorship deals until the ban commences. Existing sponsorship deals will remain in place for the next three years.

However, it is understood that gambling brands will still be able to feature in other areas, such as shirt sleeves and advertising hoardings, beyond the 2025-26 season. The Big Step, a campaign aimed at stopping all gambling advertising and sponsorship in football, has welcomed the news but stressed that more changes are needed to combat gambling’s influence in the sport.

Zoe Osmond

Gambling Aware has emphasized that gambling harms can affect anyone and that this is why they have launched a new campaign to combat stigma and open up the conversation around gambling harms. The charity has also highlighted that those worried about gambling harm can find free, confidential advice, tools, and support by searching GambleAware or contacting the National Gambling Helpline, available 24/7, on 0808 8020 133.

The Premier League’s move has been praised as a step towards reducing the exposure of gambling to young people, who are often vulnerable to its harmful effects. The league has come under criticism in the past for its close ties to the gambling industry, and this move is seen as a significant step towards greater transparency and responsibility.

As the Premier League continues to navigate the complex issue of gambling sponsorship, GambleAware and other campaigners will be closely monitoring the situation, pushing for further changes to ensure that the league’s actions are truly effective in combating gambling harms.

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