You may be aware that football betting has had its fair share of trials and tribulations in recent times. In fact, several of the stories that have emerged deserve the title of ‘scandals’, but this is through no fault of the regulatory bodies themselves. As for one area that has many punters confused at the moment, the question of can football agents bet or not is one that doesn’t have an obvious answer.
That is – until you research the topic and find out the answer isn’t quite as strange as you may think. So if you are ready for a comprehensive answer to this question, I encourage you to keep reading through the explanation below.
Can football agents bet? Why the answer is a conclusive no
As you can see from the heading, the short answer is no – football agents cannot bet on football-related competitions or anything of the sort, for that matter. And if you stop to think about this for a moment, it's perfectly understandable as to why these are the rules. However, if the answer isn't immediately jumping out at you, which is totally fine, let me give you the overall scoop on why football agents are not allowed to bet on this sport.
You may think that this isn't a big deal. After all, we are only talking about football agents, not managers or players. But given the circles in which football agents operate in, they have access to privileged information. This refers to any information that is not known by the general public. In essence, while the circumstances might be a little different, this is directly linked to what's known as ‘insider trading’ in the financial world – something that is highly illegal and an activity that carries serious consequences for those who engage in it.
But what kind of information could a football agent possibly have that would lead to an unfair advantage in the betting game? Well, they may know of possible injuries to key players ahead of any matches. They may also be aware of imminent transfer deals, team tactics that could influence certain betting markets, and so much more. Let's not forget, there can be hundreds of betting markets open for any individual game or competition.
This creates a huge likelihood that a football agent will have some kind of information in their palms, allowing them to place various bets based on privileged material.
While the first reason above doesn't relate to any specific activity of the football agent, this one certainly does. Once again, given the nature of their job, football agents have access to information, as well as players and managers. Therefore, if a football agent wanted to strike up a close relationship with a professional player, they could agree on certain things that would ultimately be called match-fixing.
Of course, there have been numerous stories relating to match-fixing in the football world, and with other sports too, so this is by no means an activity that does not exist anymore. But how could this possibly be done, and why would this be illegal? Well, let’s say a football agent approaches a goalkeeper from a certain team, for example.
The agent then offers the goalkeeper a percentage of his betting winnings if he lets at least 2 goals go past him in a game. Therefore, the result of that particular match is no longer ethical, and both would be guilty of match-fixing.
Complications if football agents were allowed to bet on football
At this point, I hope it’s clear that the answer to, can football agents bet, is a resounding and indisputable no. Additionally, I’ve clarified the key reasons why this activity is prevented through the information shared above. But now, I feel it’s time to look beyond the reasons why this is banned for football agents. Specifically, I’d like to identify two massive complications if football agents were allowed to bet on the game.
Irreversible damage to professional football
Whenever a betting or sports scandal emerges, the reputation of that sport is immediately tainted. So if this was permitted, and the public knew about it, I am 99% certain that fans would quickly turn their backs on the sport. At the same time, would we really see the best out of the players if they are incentivized to make certain outcomes a reality? No chance. And this would sour the game that we all know and love, potentially forever.
Furthermore, it’s not just the results on the field that would change. Things like transfers, tournament winners, league champions, and even managerial changes could all be impacted by this aspect of insider betting.
Sport then becomes ‘entertainment’ rather than competition
If you think about the reasons why we all love professional sports, it's because the outcome is never truly known. This element of randomness and chance creates the excitement of sports like football. And it's why millions of people worldwide love to watch it. However, if football agents were able to wager on the games, the outcome could be heavily influenced to the point at which the result would be determined by whatever is most profitable for the ‘in the know’ punters.
This would be comparable to something like the WWE. Yes, you can watch the wrestling matches and admire their skill, but deep down, we all know that the outcome has been decided before they even enter the ring.