Televised Premier League matches advertise gambling every four seconds

Sixteen gambling-related advertisements appeared every minute during televised English Premier League (EPL) matches last season, a new study has shown.

In a sample of ten broadcast matches across the 2022/23 season, covering every club in the league, researchers documented 15,663 on-screen gambling-associated logos. The most shown in one game exceeded 3,500.

While Premier League clubs have agreed to ban gambling logos from match-day shirt-fronts from 2026 onwards, the study found that these only accounted for 6.9 per cent of the total number of gambling adverts recorded.

Pitch-side hoardings

Led by Jamie Torrance – a psychology lecturer at the University of Chester – the research examined the presence of gambling, cryptocurrency, and financial trading marketing in EPL broadcasts.

It found that gambling-associated logos appeared the most during the total 964 minutes of match play studied, “appearing 16 times per broadcast minute on average”.

The paper reported: “Compared to shirt fronts, we identified an array of alternative locations in which gambling-associated logos were visible such as shirt sleeves, the stadium structure, and dynamic pitch-side hoarding.”

It said that pitch-side hoardings “were the most frequent marketing location” for all logos, accounting for over half of all the adverts shown on screen.

‘National shame’

Last season, the West Ham v Chelsea game featured the most betting logos with 3,522, or 37 for every game minute. West Ham is sponsored by online bookmaker and casino firm Betway.

Campaign group The Big Step, which is calling for an end to all gambling advertising in football, described the reported level of logos in football stadiums as “a national shame”.

“Every one of those 3,500 nudges to gamble is a potential hook into addiction for young fans, their parents and even players. The harm gambling advertising causes is no longer ignorable; the government needs to step in and end all gambling advertising in football.”

The Government’s long-delayed White Paper reforming the Gambling Act 2005 has been criticised for offering little to curb the promotion of betting in sport.

Also see:


NI goalkeeper: ‘Govt should give football gambling ads the boot’

NHS to increase gambling addiction clinics as demand reaches record high

Ladbrokes football ads banned for ‘strongly appealing’ to kids

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