Premier League clubs are suspended to agree on the phasing out of shirt sponsorship by betting companies. A decision is set to be made at a shareholder’s meeting next week in an attempt to fend off a blanket ban on betting sponsorship from the government. A White Paper which will likely recommend wholesale gambling reform in the United Kingdom is expected to be published soon, having recently been delayed for the fourth time due to the ongoing Conservative leadership elections.
It has widely been reported that shirt sponsorship by betting companies will be one of the things outlawed following the publication of the report. According to the Times, the 20 Premier League clubs are looking to get ahead of this by voluntarily agreeing to end such deals. Currently, seven top-flight sides display a betting company on the front of their shirts, with Nottingham Forest and Fulham still to reveal their jersey sponsors for the season.
The clubs will examine the ban at their next shareholder’s meeting, though a formal vote will not take place until September. The media report notes that it is expected that the motion has enough aid to pass 14 out of 20 clubs would have to be in favor for this to happen.
Although front-of-shirt sponsorship is set to be phased out, clubs are eager to retain sleeve sponsorship deals. Additionally, the ban would likely not extend to EFL clubs, for whom betting establishments offer the most lucrative deals.
It is also believed that the Premier League will use the voluntary ban on shirt sponsorship by betting companies to justify paying less to EFL clubs in solidarity grants.