Finance

FA Chief Proposes Gambling Levy

football betting concept

A levy on the proceeds of football gambling could be on the cards as a way to boost investment in the grassroots of the game, according to the chief of the Football Association.

The FA Chief Executive, Martin Glenn, raised the idea in an interview with the Daily Telegraph and referred to the need to find additional funding after the collapse of the Wembley Stadium sale deal.

Glenn was unable to gain the support of the FA Council for the proposed sale of English football’s national stadium to the Fulham owner Shahid Khan, and the deal fell through when Khan withdrew his offer, which is believed to have been worth £600million.

But Glenn believes the FA should be entitled to receive a levy from gambling profits made through bets on the sport, though such a levy would require primary legislation.

Fair return

Speaking about the principle of a levy, Glenn referred to the situation in France, where there is effectively a tax on gambling, and said that football has a legitimate claim in this area:

All those betting companies use our intellectual property to have people lay bets, so why wouldn’t a small percentage of that be put into the thing that made that possible in the first place? We, as football, could approach the government and say, ‘Have you thought about something like that?’”

According to Glenn, the amount involved would not have to be what he described as ‘a big lump sum’ and he suggested that £80 million or £100 million would be an ideal amount to go to the Football Foundation, which supports grassroots football, through building facilities and other initiatives.

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