Football Australia Profits from Amateur Game Gambling

gabriel barkhan
By:
Gabriel Barkhan
10/07/2023
News
Football Australia's Involvement in Amateur Game Gambling Revealed

Amateur Soccer Betting: From Private Meetings to Secret Contract. Football Australia's Secret Deals Exposed

News Insights

  • Football Australia's undisclosed agreements with bookmakers revealed, profiting from bets on amateur soccer games at all levels.
  • Concerns raised about the risk of match-fixing as detailed bets are placed on teenage and local social teams.
  • Data scouts play a crucial role in providing live updates for international punters to bet on real-time amateur matches.
  • Similar secretive agreements exist between major international bookmakers and other Australian sporting bodies, including NRL, AFL, and Cricket Australia.

In a shocking revelation, secretive agreements have come to light, showing Football Australia's involvement in profiting from bets on amateur soccer games. These undisclosed deals raise concerns about match-fixing risks and the exploitation of vulnerable clubs. Let's delve into the details of this controversial issue.

Football Australia's involvement in gambling on amateur soccer games has been revealed through secretive agreements obtained by Four Corners. 

Similar deals have been struck between major international bookmakers and other Australian sporting bodies, including the NRL, AFL, and Cricket Australia. These agreements allow the governing bodies to earn a commission, known as product integrity fees, of up to 17.5% of bookmakers' profits from bets placed on their events. Football Australia's arrangement enables them to receive a percentage of every bet placed in Australia on a soccer game or 15% of the bookmaker's profit, whichever is higher.

The availability of detailed bets on amateur games, including those played by teenagers, has raised concerns about the potential risks of match-fixing. Data scouts play a crucial role in this system, providing live updates to bookmakers on games that are not typically live-streamed. This allows punters from around the world to bet on matches in real time.

One data scout working for Sportradar, a Swiss corporation specializing in collecting live data at sporting events, expressed his concerns about the situation. He emphasized that thousands of bets, sometimes totaling up to $1 million, can be placed on a single suburban Australian soccer match by international customers.

The volume of betting on amateur sports, though shocking to some, is driven by the availability of betting markets and the interest of punters. Prasad Kanitkar, a former trader with Bet365, highlighted the allure of betting on a variety of sports and leagues for some people, likening it to a casino experience. However, the increased availability of gambling on low-level games raises the risk of match-fixing, particularly for vulnerable amateur clubs. The national match-fixing watchdog has warned about the potential for players to be approached to throw a match, especially when they are not adequately informed or trained to handle such risks.

Football Australia defended its decision to allow betting on lower-level competitions, stating that it is part of their strategy to maintain oversight and protect the game from potential integrity threats through information sharing. The organization emphasized that it is aware of the risks involved and has comprehensive integrity frameworks in place to manage them. Similarly, other Australian sporting codes, such as the NRL, AFL, and Cricket Australia, have agreements with bookmakers, earning millions of dollars each year. These financial arrangements are typically reinvested in integrity services, education, well-being, and participation programs.

The concerns about the relationship between sporting codes and bookmakers extend beyond soccer, as agreements between bookmakers and other major Australian sporting bodies have also been uncovered. However, the financial details of these deals are not disclosed in the organizations' financial statements. Cricket Australia acknowledged the existence of betting on livestreamed amateur matches and encouraged clubs to geo-block their feeds to prevent unlicensed bookmakers from accessing them. Sport Integrity

Australia expressed concern about unlicensed offshore bookmakers potentially using live feeds to gather information and offer betting markets, highlighting the need for vigilance, and reporting of suspicious behavior.

In summary, the revelations about Football Australia's involvement in gambling on amateur soccer games through secretive agreements shed light on the broader relationship between Australian sporting bodies and bookmakers. The existence of these agreements, the availability of detailed bets on lower-level games, and the role of data scouts raise concerns about match-fixing risks and the potential exploitation of vulnerable clubs. While the financial benefits from these agreements can support integrity services and other programs, maintaining a balance between revenue generation and protecting the integrity of the sport remains a challenge.

Secret betting agreements have exposed Football Australia's involvement in profiting from bets on amateur soccer games. These undisclosed deals have raised concerns about match-fixing risks and the exploitation of vulnerable clubs. The revelations shed light on the broader relationship between Australian sporting bodies and bookmakers.