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Paddy Power Urges Betting Operators To End Football Shirt Sponsorships

Paddy Power Save Our Shirts

Paddy Power has called for betting operators to end football shirt sponsorships with the launch of a new campaign.

The Irish bookmaker, which recently rebranded to Flutter Entertainment, has urged betting operators to stop football shirt sponsorships after revealing that its recent shirt sponsorship of Huddersfield Town, an English Championship football club, was a stunt to promote its new campaign.

Paddy Power Betfair announced details of a one-year football shirt sponsorship with Huddersfield Town this week in which the Paddy Power logo was branded across the shirt. The news wasn’t well-received as fans criticised the size of the Paddy Power branding on the football shirt.

Some users believed the announcement to be a hoax until the team wore the shirt in a friendly match against Rochdale, prompting the Football Association (FA) to contact Huddersfield Town over the sponsorship for beaking its shirt sponsorship guidelines.

However, the Irish bookmaker announced on Twitter on Friday (July 19) that the revealed kit was a complete hoax and was actually part of the firm’s new Save Our Shirt campaign which aims to highlight issues regarding football shirt sponsorships.

The Save Our Shirts Campaign

According to Paddy Power, over half of the teams in the top two divisions of the2019-2020 football season are sponsored by a bookmaker, with 14 of those Championship teams set to wear branded shirts. So as part of the campaign, Paddy Power is sponsoring the football club but has removed all branding on the club’s football kits. It’s urged other betting operators to follow suit.

Reports reveal that Paddy Power has teamed up with Octagon and VCCP Blue for the campaign. The firms have plans to support the Irish bookmaker throughout its campaign and will promote it across social media, television and print and digital media.

Henry Nash, the Head of Strategy for Octagon, said: “In the face of football’s crass commercialisation and relentless exploitation of fans, our ambition was to do something good for the game. There was really only one brand brave enough to pull this off. We’re beyond thrilled that Paddy Power have taken a stand with Save Our Shirt.”

He added: “We believe this idea will have a lasting legacy – not just on the brand but on the game itself.”

In a statement, Paddy Power Managing Director Victor Corcoran said: “Shirt sponsorship in football has gone too far. We accept that there is a role for sponsors around football, but the shirt should be sacred. So today we are calling on other sponsors to join the Save Our Shirt campaign, and give something back to fans. As a sponsor, we know our place, and it’s not on your shirt.”

Sean Jarvis, the Commercial Director at Huddersfield, added: “We’re happy to support Paddy Power’s ‘Save Our Shirt’ campaign with the launch of our actual 2019/20 home kit this morning. It has been a very interesting two days’ since the original launch on Wednesday, which we expected, but we’ve always had in mind that our supporters would understand, and really like the real kit when it was properly revealed today.”

For more information on Paddy Power’s campaign, visit www.saveourshirt.co.uk.

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