Swansea City: Club move away from betting sponsors

Rooney, Routledge, betting logos
Campaigners believe betting has been normalised within football and can lead to addiction

Swansea City agreed a shirt sponsorship deal with Swansea University as part of an effort to move away from an association with betting companies.

The Swans have had betting firms on their shirts for the past four seasons.

A House of Lords Select Committee report has recommended Premier League clubs should not be allowed to have betting firms on their shirts.

Last season, half of Premier League clubs and 17 of 24 Championship clubs were sponsored by bookmakers.

Swansea, who were beaten in the Championship play-offs this season, were mindful of children wanting the same shirts the players wear and say they have listened to supporters' criticism on the issue in previous seasons.

"This is the perfect partnership that encapsulates our club and our city," Swansea's head of commercial, Rebecca Edwards-Symmons said.

"This is the first year of not having a betting brand on our front of shirt in four years, which enables our Junior Jacks to wear the same shirt as their Swans heroes."

'Hope more clubs follow'

James Grimes, a former gambler who runs charity The Big Step, which is tackling football's relationship with gambling, said he was "delighted" by the news which would "help reverse the normalisation of gambling within football".

He added: "The positive reaction from their fans is a reminder that gambling shirt sponsorship is overwhelmingly unpopular with fans and parents.

"Young fans should be able to wear the same kit as their parents and their heroes but most importantly, children shouldn't be exposed to brands that sell products associated with addiction.

"We hope more clubs follow their lead and that government ends all gambling advertising and sponsorship in football."

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