Forest Green become first professional club in England to call for a ban on gambling sponsorship

Forest Green Rovers become first professional club in England to call for a ban on gambling sponsorship and advertising as chairman Dale Vince says it’s an ‘abuse of football and its fans’

Forest Green are first club in England to call for a ban on gambling sponsorshipAs it stands, the Government are currently reviewing the 2005 Gambling Act This could result in betting logos being barred from appearing on football shirtsLeague Two side Forest Green are backing a blanket betting ban in football 

Forest Green have become the first professional club in England to publicly call for a ban on gambling sponsorship and advertising in football.

The Government is currently reviewing the 2005 Gambling Act, which could result in betting logos being barred from appearing on football shirts.

Such regulation would be strongly opposed by the EFL, but League Two side Forest Green, who already refuse to take on gambling sponsorship, are backing a blanket betting ban.

Forest Green have become the first professional club in England to publicly call for a ban on gambling sponsorship and advertising in football (file photo used above)

Forest Green chairman Dale Vince said: ‘It’s like gambling has taken over football. If you watch a game on TV you are inundated with ads – gambling logos are on almost half of Premier League shirts, and constantly flash up on pitch side boards.

‘For me, the fun already stopped. This is an abuse of football and of football fans.’

Forest Green have joined forces with the Big Step campaign, part of the charity Gambling with Lives, which was established to support those bereaved by gambling-related harm.

Forest Green chairman Dale Vince (above) says it 'is an abuse of football and of football fans'

Forest Green chairman Dale Vince (above) says it ‘is an abuse of football and of football fans’

James Grimes, founder of the Big Step, is 'delighted to have the support of Forest Green'

James Grimes, founder of the Big Step, is ‘delighted to have the support of Forest Green’

James Grimes, founder of the Big Step, said: ‘We’re delighted to have the support of Forest Green Rovers. This is a vital moment to secure meaningful gambling reform in the UK.

‘Our outdated gambling laws need to change, especially with the exponential rise of online gambling.

Sponsorship of sporting events by tobacco companies is banned and we believe gambling should be the same.

‘To be truly effective, shirt sponsorship, stadium promotions and other branding should not be visible during matches.’