The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) has raised concerns that infomercials on betting are being used to promote football, Ray Winstone and other unsavoury addictions. The fear is that supporting West Ham Utd could become ‘normalised’, with football addicts re-mortgaging their homes, just so they can buy ‘one more’ Arsenal season ticket.
Perfectly innocent billboards, advertising gambling firms, can easily be a front for stadium or sporting merchandise; with the gambling proceeds of unsuspecting punters subsidizing premiership footballers.
In 2007, Tony Blair made sport exempt from the pre-watershed rules, although Paul Merson’s face still comes with an ’18’ certificate. The knock-on effect has seen a steep rise in Mike Ashley lotteries, Roy Keane baiting and the Rooney’s marital ‘cock & bull’ fights.
One RGA rep said: ‘Who knows what the damaging influence of watching sport will be on young children? These kids should be out in their local park, gambling on unregistered tramp and duck bouts. The RGA promotes responsible gambling, as opposed to Crystal Palace’s irresponsible appointment of Frank de Boer’.