Bolton Wanderers Act After Breaching Betting Rules

  • September 08, 2018 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/966a0

Bolton Wanderers have been identified as one of a number of clubs whose websites carried links to online betting companies on pages aimed at children.

An investigation, headed by BBC 5 live, listed Wanderers as one of 15 clubs across the Premier League, Championship, League One and Scottish Premiership - all of whom have gambling firms as their principle shirt sponsors.

Many of those clubs - including Bolton - host websites as part of the EFL Digital network, who have worked diligently to remove offending logos from all pages until an acceptable resolution can be found from a technical viewpoint.

At the time of writing, all instances of the Betfred logo had been removed from bwfc.co.uk.

A statement from EFL Chief Executive Shaun Harvey said: "The EFL has taken immediate steps to resolve an issue on some of its Club websites regarding the appearance of betting logos on pages that are primarily designed to engage children and young people under 18.

"As soon as we were made aware of the issue, which came about as a result of a misinterpretation of the Advertising Standards Authority Code, a resolution was quickly developed and implemented to ensure the matter was resolved as promptly as possible. We apologise to all supporters of our Clubs for any concerns this may have raised.

"All Clubs who have betting partners have been instructed to remove any logos from pages aimed at minors. It is important to stress that along with our 72 Clubs, the EFL is acutely aware of the wider concerns regarding football's relationship with the gambling industry, in particular with young people and as a result, has introduced a Memorandum of Understanding with title partner Sky Bet, which covers best practice, protecting minors and the vulnerable and how we collectively market the partnership. This makes the oversight even more embarrassing.

"The agreement represents a shared belief that both the EFL and Sky Bet should always be mindful of our collective responsibilities in ensuring that we consider the relevant audiences in communications which relate to betting. This is especially relevant to minors and the following provisions are in place to ensure messages shared are appropriate:

- Any communications targeted at minors will not include reference to Sky Bet
- Sky Bet kit branding, such as Sleeve Badges, is not incorporated onto replica shirts sold to under 18s in in children's sizes
- Players under the age of 18 are not obliged to wear Sky Bet branded kit
- Sky Bet will not market themselves in family areas of stadiums

"In addition, Sky Bet have recently begun funding responsible gambling sessions for all EFL Clubs, providing first team players and Club staff with specialist training and education to ensure all involved understand the issues linked to gambling, the rules around betting integrity, and know how to look out for signs of potential harm in their teammates.

"The work that will take place with EFL Clubs, players and staff alike is a hugely significant step forward and will hopefully have a positive impact on all participants in the professional game for many years to come."

Clubs found to be in breach of regulations were:

Premier League
Wolverhampton Wanderers

Championship
Aston Villa, Blackburn Rovers, Bolton Wanderers, Brentford, Ipswich Town, Norwich City, Nottingham Forest, Stoke City

League One
Blackpool, Bristol Rovers, Charlton Athletic

Scottish Premiership
Glasgow Celtic, Hibernian, Motherwell

Football betting site Betway

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
19 Rochdale 34 36
20 AFC Wimbledon 35 35
21 Tranmere Rovers 34 32
22 Southend United 35 19
23 Bolton Wanderers 34 14
View Full Standings >>

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