Background: The UK’s Premier League and Championship are two of the most well attended soccer leagues worldwide; however, little is known regarding exposure to gambling marketing through the matchday experience. The current study sought to quantify exposure to gambling and alcohol marketing, and responsible gambling messages within matchday programmes.
Methods: Programmes for each team in the English Premier League and Championship were analysed across consecutive matchday weekends, made available to 1,269,404 match-going fans. Direct adverts for, and incidental exposure to, gambling, alcohol, and responsible gambling marketing or messages were coded. Direct adverts were counted, as were absolute counts and percentage of pages with incidental exposure.
Results: Programmes averaged 2.3 direct gambling adverts and 37.8 instances of incidental gambling marketing exposure. Incidental gambling marketing was found on 22.2% of pages. There was more gambling marketing than either alcohol marketing or responsible gambling messages. This was observed across: number of direct adverts (p <.001), incidents of exposure (p <.001) and the percentage of pages with exposure (p <.001). Teams with gambling shirt sponsors had more incidental marketing exposure, in both absolute count (p <.001) and percentage of pages (p <.001) but did not have more direct gambling adverts (p = .63). Incidental exposure to gambling marketing was present in 59.0% of children’s specific sections of programmes.
Conclusions. There was greater exposure to gambling marketing in soccer matchday programmes. Gambling marketing was frequently evident in child specific sections of matchday programmes. Attending soccer matches and reading the matchday programme increases exposure to gambling. Link to the article
Citation: Sharman, S., Ferreira, C.A., & Newall, P.W.S. (2019). Exposure to gambling and alcohol marketing in soccer matchday programmes. Journal of Gambling Studies. In Press.