Gambling ads are getting more and more ubiquitous, but not in the Premier League. In an announcement released Thursday morning, the group of 20 clubs said they have decided to ban gambling sponsorships from being displayed on the front of shirts worn during games. The ban is scheduled begin by the end of the 2025-26 season.
Premier League clubs have today collectively agreed to withdraw gambling sponsorship from the front of clubs’ matchday shirts, becoming the first sports league in the UK to take such a measure voluntarily in order to reduce gambling advertising.
The announcement follows an extensive consultation involving the League, its clubs and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport as part of the Government’s ongoing review of current gambling legislation.
This ban follows similar gambling advertising restrictions instituted in Italy’s Serie A in 2019 and Spain’s La Liga in 2021.
Lucy Frazer, a member of the UK Parliament and Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, tweeted her support of the ban, mentioning the tried-and-true trope that athletes are role models to young children.
Eight Premier League teams currently have gambling sponsorships with ads on the front of their game day shirts: Bournemouth, Brentford, Everton, Fulham, Leeds, Newcastle, Southampton and West Ham. According to Sky Sports, these sponsorships are worth around $75 million per year.
While there will be no more shirt-front gambling ads by the end of the 2025-26 season, the Premier League isn’t banning gambling sponsorships altogether. Sky Sports reported that clubs will be able to feature gambling ads pretty much everywhere else besides the front of the shirt, including on the sleeve of the game day shirt. (At least the ad is smaller on the sleeve, right?) Additionally, until the ban goes into effect, clubs will be able to display existing and new gambling sponsorships on the front of shirts.