Online Gambling on Football Dot Com

bolton-kit

The connection between online gambling and soccer continues to grow in prominence — damn, I really need to learn to bet on soccer — with 188Bet becoming the first two-team kit sponsor in the EPL … their brand soon to be on both Wigan and Bolton. In a two-year deal, gone is JJB Sports and Gone-ish is Reebok.

188Bet-Bolton and 188Bet-Wigan join Mansion-Tottenham and SBOBET-West Ham … making online gambling outfits the torso sponsor of 20 percent of the EPL.

PokerStars, of course, recently entered into Mexico’s Primera Division with FC Chivas, PartyBets has a Coca-Cola team with Leyton Orient, and of course the big boys, Bwin, have Real Madrid, AC Milan, and Bayern Munich. I’m almost sure I’m forgetting a few others …

188Bet, interestingly enough, is an online gambling op that currently draws 80 percent of its customers from the Asian market, and it’s just a coincidence that the new Bolton jersey image above happens to be sized at 188 pixels

Author: Danieldinho

I like soccer.

5 thoughts on “Online Gambling on Football Dot Com”

  1. I like where this is going, but I really wonder if something like this can fly in the US. I’m thinking out loud here, but MLS needs moneybag sponsors. Harah’s, or some other Vegas based enterprise sponsoring a MLS team? Soccer may just be under the radar enough for it to happen without too huge an outcry. The clear argument for such a sponsorship will be how so many major clubs do it in Europe without it affecting the integrity of the game.

  2. This will not fly in MLS because of their overall marketing direction. Rather than behave as a major sport (and risk a whole lot more), MLS seemingly positions itself as a niche diversion placing each team on an island to drum up its own business. This forces ticket people to get anyone they can into the stadium through group sales and promotions rather than allowing the event to sell itself. In minor league parlance, it’s “Cub Scout and Soccer Mom” night. These demographics don’t lend themselves to online gambling/casino investors. And I’m sure they (the companies) have looked into it.

    Given the structure of MLS, I’d be far more interested in a gambling entity buying a team from the league, for about the same price as a shirt sponsorship in Europe. That could bring the necessary funds to a starving league, up the bar for promotional quality (provided it’s run properly), attract huge attention to the league, and hopefully challenge the idea that such ownership harms the integrity of the game.

    You can’t tell me that the economic and racial demographics of Las Vegas couldn’t support a team of it’s own. Hell, they were one of the few profitable USFL markets.

  3. Somewhere within the parameters of our viewpoints lies a solution to this. I agree with the majority of what you say (and it pains me to no end in agreeing with a Manc bastard), but is the MLS model working. The key for any sport venture is tapping into disposable income. If the main demographic in MLS are the suburbs and family, in a recession such as this, that group tightens its purse strings and cuts back. Already this season and last there were major drops in attendance. A mainstay of disposable income spending are single males with no responsibilities in terms of paying for a growing family. If a gambling enterprise wants to enter into the sport market in an ownership or sponsorship role now may be its most viable window.

  4. Dan … glad to see the beginning, of Soccerati. All the best; and, good luck with Pokerati’s “baby brother”.

  5. The MLS model is not working, but I can’t say that it won’t work. It fundamentally relies on grass roots development of interest in the sport, so the theory is that you get kids that play soccer to come and watch soccer, and as they age they’ll continue to attend. Unfortunately, that’s something that can take generations to build unless you have an established quality product from day one.

    Simple example- hockey. The NHL took it’s product to southern cities where it flourished initially because it was the best version of the sport. If you were going to like hockey for any reason, the NHL provided it. Then, each of those teams spread out into the community to get kids to play the sport, investing millions in rinks, leagues, and coaching. While some NHL markets are suffering (largely b/c of the television package botching, but that’s another story), most have established roots in the community that will keep the stadia full or at least full enough.

    In markets that can’t support NHL, there are more than 100 minor league teams. Those rely on marketing gimmicks and promotions because they can’t say “we’re the best.” Initial interest wains, crowds dwindle, and teams move or fold. I believe this is where MLS is. It is only through league ownership of teams and tight reins on salaries that half the teams haven’t folded.

    It is for this reason that I believe that the David Beckham experiment can only be measured by what MLS does over the next few years. It is unquestioned that he sold tickets, in large part because the casual consumer wanted to see what they were told was “the best.” Recession or not, the American public will pay to see the best of anything. I’m not suggesting that it is as simple as “build it and they will come,” but the status quo is not working and will take many years to take hold.

    There is a workable plan that will shorten the growth period to 3-6 years, but I won’t share it until I’m named commissioner.

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