Italian Football: Possible Return of Betting Sponsorship

Published on: 29 November 2020
Italian Football: Possible Return of Betting Sponsorship
Italian Football: Possible Return of Betting Sponsorship

When placed side by side, you will discover the significant and vibrant relationship that exists between the lovely game of soccer and the gambling world. This relationship is everything to covet for as it appears and remains strong and flourishing, that anyone would agree that this is a match made in heaven.

For football fans, the ecstasy, banters, support, and thrills of the game would not be complete without the infuse of those “odds”. The fans are always throbbing in anticipation for their predicted possible outcomes as the game goes on. It is another factor that has found its way into the rich culture of football fanaticism. More so, as football made its mark a long time ago as the biggest sport globally, it became a primary and coveted market for gambling operators and related companies to hold their profit-making businesses.

So far, this pact has been immensely flourishing for both sides of the agreement. This growth has increased astronomically to the point that recent events have proven that these two parties are now dependent on each other, and thus, inseparable. This then paints the situation of things exactly in the Italian football environment. Some of the online bookmakers at NonAAMS also want to connect with football. As the country’s sports made a move to ban gambling in this sporting realm, the decision has been met with a nose-diving economic downturn.

What used to be the case?

What exactly prompted the change?

What step was taken for a change?

And what step is picked out as a solution to this case?

Follow through to find out!

Previous Gambling Sponsorship Ban

The journey down to this point began in July 2019, when the Dignity Decree (Decreto Dignita) was passed and came into effect immediately. This decree bans betting ads and sponsorship agreements in Italy completely.

As you could have imagined, the decree did not without an effect. This decree evidently left a significant mark on the football sector of the country, with more than half of the clubs in the Italian top-flight division, Serie A, holding contractual agreements with at least one gambling operator as sponsors.

The move that gave rise to this decree had initially begun in 2018 when the Lega/5-Star faction was in office. Back then, it was a way of initiating civil procedures of performing commercial transactions in the Italian community.

With this move, Italy became the first country in Europe to have a ban placed on gambling activities. More so, this ban placed on gambling activities in the country happened to be a stringent one as well.

Since the pronouncement of this decree, it always seemed like one that will be accompanied by a lot of problems. The problems with this kind of decree were apparent, everyone knew forehand that the football world in Italy was going to be gravely affected.

With estimated losses being valued in hundreds of millions of euros, it was clearly written on the wall, the effects of the ban are all but good. The decree was thereafter on course to negatively influence the excellence of football clubs in Serie A, and, beyond doubt, impede their level of prominence among other teams in the continent. Sadly, all the appeals made to those in charge to review this decree and check whether it is necessary especially in the sporting sectors, fell on deaf ears.

Serie A Authorities Call For Dignity Decree Pause

This decree has been negatively impactful on Italian football as a whole. The estimated losses are now a reality as there is no revenue coming in as they used to. Revenue sources like gambling ads, sponsorship deals, and others are no longer in existence leading to starvation in cash flow over the last few years.

The situation has been made more difficult by the lengthy halt that football globally and in Italy had to experience. The resumption further witnessed the absence of fans in stadiums and consequently, the absence of ticket sales. This has further heightened the financial drought in Italian football, especially in the Lega Serie A.

These impacts place the leagues and other aspects of the nation’s football as a whole at the detriment, especially when compared to their European counterparts. Other leagues in other countries in Europe are profiting significantly from these sponsorship deals from gambling operators, albeit within a regulated system

Giovanni Malagò, the chairman of the Olympic Committee in Italy, explains the present realities: “We are in an emergency and instead of asking for money, it is appropriate to restart any potential marketing action with the betting companies. I have always been totally against the ban, which weakened our teams and our sports facilities”.

If the situation persists the way it is presently, and the calls being made for the review of this decree and a pause to the laws restricting these gambling sponsorships, the dire conditions of football teams and the entire football sector in Italy will continue to deepen. It is expedient that this decree is paused as it has done more harm than good.

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