SPFL must reconsider gambling sponsorship deal

Gambling addiction has a terrible impact on our communities.

The Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) should reconsider its reported new sponsorship deal with gambling giant William Hill, say the Scottish Greens.

Last year, English Premier League teams voluntarily agreed to ditch gambling sponsors from the front of their shirts in order to tackle widespread addiction amongst football supporters in the UK.

Responding to the deal, Scottish Greens sports spokesperson, Gillian Mackay MSP, said: “This is a really disappointing announcement. There is no doubt that Scottish football needs support, but we all know about the deep wounds gambling addiction has caused in communities all across our country.

“What message does this send? We've seen high profile cases of players and managers facing suspension from football due to the damage it has done, and there will be fans of all clubs suffering in silence.

“The English Premier League has seen welcome steps, with clubs in the league voluntarily agreeing to end gambling sponsorship on their strips, helping to remove their logos from the spotlight.

“Unfortunately, the SPFL have taken a different approach. By putting gambling companies front and centre of Scottish Football they are putting profits before the welfare of supporters, players and staff.

“Tobacco sponsorship in football ended a long time ago, and for good reason. It is time for alcohol and gambling to be treated the same way.

“I hope that the SPFL reconsiders this deal and puts football fans and communities first.”