Football and gambling


Hamilton manager, Brian Rice, has received lots of supportive comments since yesterday’s statement admitting to a gambling addiction, as well as breaking rules for betting on football over the last five seasons.  The SFA have a duty to discipline him in line with previous offenders when their disciplinary panel meet later this month, but there should be some nervous shuffling in the room, as much of the game’s finances in Scotland are underpinned by the gambling industry.  Do as we say, not as we write commercial agreements.

For me, gambling amounts to losing money on every race at my once a year visit to Hamilton Park Racecourse, a sensation that has never once returned an endorphin kick, so will never be addictive, but I go along and bet every year, so I cannot be snooty about others who earn from it.

Football’s rules on the matter are nothing to do with welfare; those who work in the game are subject to a flow of insider information and influence, which could compromise the game.  One player was recently disciplined for betting on his own team to lose (they won and he scored).  However, the issue has welfare consequence, both for high-earning players and the ordinary punter.

Brian Rice will hopefully overcome his demons, he will certainly have the best of support towards this end.  By speaking out so frankly, he has given the game an opening.  What can football and the gambling industry do to help the addicted fan?  Football has access to people the way few outreach programmes could ever hope for.  It has a job here.


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  1. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Sorry Paul but the leader could have done better by mentioning our club.



    I am generally supportive of our board and do TRY to find consensus and common ground in all things Celtic.



    On this one I am binary to the point of being puritanical.



    A betting company logo should not be contaminating our beloved hoops.



    Our founder would turn in his grave.



    Shame on our board.



    BTW – the above applies equally to alcohol manufacturers.



    Hail hail

  2. With slightly better finishing Celtic could have done Thistle 3 or 4. Edouard had to great chances, clipped the bar with one and missed the target with the other.



    20 shots on goal. 11 on target.



    Hibs, Aberdeen, St Mirren and Hearts have escaped with respectable defeats when they could have been battered.



    This has left me a bit concerned about finishing. But if your a glass half-full type you’ll be thinking “somebody is due a battering”

  3. Paul, be snooty about Hamilton


    I have been lucky enough to be at most of the great tracks in the world


    sitting on the bench by the finish line at Hamilton as they come up the hill cannot be beat.




    – ask me a story about a bookie

  4. I’m sure the reason footballers bet on football is because they think that they know about the game.


    Jockeys and trainers bet on racing etc.

  5. Killie’s record in recent matches may be poor but hey Celtic coming to their home patch and on live TV we can expec t fireworks and they will kick everything that moves above the plastic, we are in for a hard match and the first big challenge of 2020. I’m not convinced by young Frimpongs defensive qualities, a very good player no doubt but? ELHamed needs to get back fit pronto, a great signing. Reports that Barcelona are about to sign El Primitivo to team up with Messi and Co, perhaps the Spanish version of the fairy tales of Ireland.

  6. It is great for Scottish football that Barcelona are keen to sign Alfredo Morelos…..they might also be interested in Motherwell`s Liam Donnelly….he has received nine yellows in fifteen games.

  7. If Sevco were playing Killie tomorrow night we would expect them (Sevco) to win. As we are playing them, let`s expect our team to win. It MIGHT help.



    Morphicresonance CSC

  8. Hunderbirds are Gone on



    Good observation. I think the fact that so many of our upcoming fixtures are away from home is a good thing.


    The away support … well, support.



  9. Back to basics – tax laws are a joke – mogg is chicken feed – Amazon, Google and other international companies are the real mega cheats

  10. If we play Forfar for example we are worried we won’t win


    If we play Barca we expect to win








    No, that can’t be right. Some folk on here were extolling his virtues as a paragon of integrity and honour. Your tweet would suggest that he is in fact a complete prick.

  12. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Gene – I don’t doubt your arithmetic.



    That said, Amazon and Google didn’t actively promote Brexit from the front while privately doing this.

  13. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    FrankTerry – apologies.



    Missed your earlier reply.



    At the risk of excessively paraphrasing you …



    if you are suggesting that, notwithstanding some of our community interpreting JRM’s shared faith with us as an example of shared values, his coexistent positions re: Brexit and tax avoidance leave him open to claims of hypocrisy …..



    Then I agree.



    Clearly you were more succinct.






    Gene – freely accept others do this too my friend.



    For me, the dishonesty is a bigger issue than the “bog standard” aggressive tax avoidance.

  14. Money laundering in Northern Ireland : Seven arrested as £215m of assets seized.





    Shooorly not !

  15. Hot Smokie……….



    I think Fat Charlie’s partial to a wee pastie or four, so the tawdry teddy could be in clover…….







  16. Here’s our record against Scottish opposition in the 9 games pre the winter break for the last 3 seasons:



    2016-2017: won 9


    2017-2018: won 5, drew 3, lost 1


    2018-2019: won 6, drew 2, lost 2



    This season: Won 8 lost 1



    In each of the last 3 seasons we’ve won every one of the next 9 games against Scottish opposition.



    I’ve chosen 9 games because it’s been pointed out that we haven’t scored more than 2 goals in any of our last 9 games and it made me think about what the effect on the hardest working midfield in show business was this season and in previous seasons.



    A rest, and possibly some new blood, does seem to have an immediate effect on our results

  17. We start back in earnest tomorrow night. The Europa and SC will provide welcome distraction but the league is the be all and end all.



    With that in mind, we’ll win comfortably tomorrow. We simply can’t afford to drop any league points.



    We were promised a squad to win every game not so long ago. New signings would be very welcome.

  18. A feature of our play for a few weeks now has been our very slow starts. I hope we put down a marker for the rest of the season and start tomorrow night like a team that simply must win.

  19. Two thirds of the way through the window and we have signed…………..one player.




  20. An Dun


    Don’t disagree but we scored early on Saturday – I fully expected us to score a lot more.

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