Premier League clubs prepared to back ban on betting brands as shirt sponsors

Premier League clubs will support a ban on betting shirt sponsorships if certain conditions are met, the Times has reported.

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Next week, England’s top 20 football teams will convene to discuss the proposal at a Premier League shareholders’ meeting.

Clubs had faced pressure earlier this month to drop gambling brands as their main shirt sponsors, but a government shakeup ultimately led the League to relax its stance. Instead, a discussion on the matter was tabled for the upcoming meeting.

While there has been much speculation concerning the support for a voluntary ban, the Times has said club sources indicate it will be passed.

This requires the backing of 14 teams, including the so-called big six: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham.

However, of these, none currently has a gambling brand as its main shirt sponsor, though seven other top-flight clubs do while Nottingham Forest and Fulham have yet to confirm deals.

Furthermore, teams are expected to insist on maintaining sleeve sponsorships and a three-season transitional period.

Regardless of next week’s outcome, a vote on the proposal will likely not occur until at least September when the UK’s political environment is more stable.

The UK Government’s much-anticipated White Paper on gambling reform will also be published around this time after a delay last week saw it pushed back once again, this time until a new Prime Minister is found.

In May, reports suggested that the UK Government was considering a mandatory ban on betting shirt sponsorships, though this was latter dropped in favour of a voluntary agreement.

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