FAI boss Jonathan Hill has confirmed that the Football Association of Ireland would not seek gambling companies to bail the organization.
Jonathan Hill Opts Out of Gambling Partnerships
The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) is reluctant to seek closer ties with gambling companies and confirmed the organization’s chief executive, Jonathan Hill, who said that FAI would avoid betting companies. The news is music to gambling opponents’ ears.
This comes in a rather challenging context, with the company already losing three major sponsors, adding financial insult to injury.
However, the FAI boss is hopeful that pandemic restrictions would allow audiences to return to stadiums, and give the game its old look, and not least drive gate receipts that have been in deplorable states.
Speaking to the media out from London, Hill explained that FAI had made it “reasonably clear” that no gambling sponsorships are planned in the immediate future. The decision does not come out on a whim, he elaborated, saying that the board had asked him to weigh both the pros and cons of striking a similar partnership.
Betting Sponsorships, an Integral Part
He acknowledged that betting sponsorships are an integral part of the financial backbone of many sports outfits across the United Kingdom. The matter was debated openly with the board, and in the end, directors decided not to pursue a betting partnership, something Hill saw as the right call at the time, too.
Hill explained that the situation is not easy. Stepping in as chief executive, he is now facing the loss of three sponsors who had been pushing the FAI forward for ten years without faltering. Finding a new sponsor during COVID would be a tremendous feat, too.
He further explained that restarting live attendance would be one of the best ways forward. Even 5,000 to 10,000 people would be enough, Hill argued. Hill also makes a powerful argument that even cash-strapped sporting organizations may not need to seek gambling companies to bail them out.
This gives gambling abolitionist teeth to pursue a stronger argument against banning gambling advertisements from the public eye, and specifically from sports.