GambleAware has expressed its disappointment with several Premier League clubs having recently announced gambling shirt sponsors for the upcoming season.
Alexia Clifford, the group’s Chief Communications Officer, suggested that the top-flight – despite its decision to remove all betting companies from the front of shirts from the 2026/27 season – is perhaps not viewing gambling harms as a serious public health concern.
“More regulation of advertising and marketing is needed in order to protect children and young people,” she said.
“We support a complete ban of gambling sponsorship appearing on shirt fronts, shirt sleeves, and anywhere in stadiums.”
It was only last month that Aston Villa announced a multi-year partnership with BK8 which will see the online betting operator front the Premier League club’s shirts as its primary sponsor.
However, this three-year deal will only last until the end of the 2025/26 league season – coinciding with the enforcement of the league-wide ban on gambling front-of-shirt sponsorships.
Now, for the 2023/24 season, a total of seven teams in the league will have gambling companies as their main shirt sponsor, including: Aston Villa, Bournemouth, Brentford, Burnley (with W88 – a deal was also only confirmed last month), Everton, Fulham and West Ham.
Meanwhile, Crystal Palace and Wolverhampton Wanderers will carry logos on their shirt sleeves. However, under the league’s plans, these deals could continue after the 2026/27 cut-off period for front-of-shirt sponsors.
Clifford continued: “If you’re worried about how gambling makes you feel, we can help. For free and confidential advice, tools and support, search GambleAware or contact the National Gambling Helpline, available 24/7, on 0808 8020 133.”
Because of further backlash surrounding Premier League clubs and gambling companies, notably, Chelsea FC recently pulled out of negotiations for a potential partnership with Stake.com following disapproval from the club’s supporter’s trust.
The organisation claimed that believing any deal with the operator would have made a ‘mockery’ of its work on problem gambling awareness.