The German Football Association (DFB ) Conference was a Success

Rechtsanwalt Dr. Wulf Hambach

Hambach & Hambach Rechtsanwälte
Haimhauser Str. 1
D - 80802 München
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On the 17th of May 2005, the DFB (German Football Association, Deutscher Fußball-Bund) and the DFL (Deutsche Fußball Liga GmbH, German Football League GmbH) brought together national (e.g., Interwetten or Betandwin e.K.) and International bookmakers (e.g., the global players, Sportingbet and Betfair) as well as representatives of the football associations FIFA and UEFA and representatives of other European football leagues (e.g., English and Spanish) to a betting conference. The conference was conducted by Rolf Hocke (Vice-President of DFB) and Wilfried Straub (Director of DFL). In particular, the DFL-Director spoke optimistically to the author of a future successful collaboration between betting operators and football operators.

It was the set goal of the betting conference to sound out the possibilities of collaboration between the betting sector and sport operators with regard to agreement on the introduction of an early warning and reaction system to avoid game manipulation. The effect of this is to be a new system in the future, through collaboration between the organisation „European Sports Security Agency“ (ESSA, initiated by the European Betting Association), which imposes obligations on operators and one of the early warning systems developed by the firm Betradar which is well-known in the sector. The ESSA (to which sports betting firms such as the group of companies Sportingbet / Eurosportwetten and Betandwin belong) last demonstrated its effectivity at a football game in the Bulgarian League. Following a warning from the ESSA to its members of a strong suspicion of manipulation, the affected game was removed from the betting programmes of the ESSA members in sufficient time. Because of the suspicious facts which appear to be proving true, the enquiries in this case are still going on.

At the end of the betting conference – at which there was no fear of contact at all to be felt – the partakers voted in favour of composing a Code of Conduct. The joint aim of concluding “clean” football events and thereby sporting bet events enabled the private operators to assess the approach of the DFB and DFL as very positive. The danger that the manipulation of a football game will yet again escalate to a betting scandal would be considerably lessened by a realisation of this plan.

By the way: The refusal by ODDSET and the possible introduction of their own DFB-sport bet were only discussed on the fringes of the conference – all in all, the rift which opened up recently between DFB and ODDSET – diplomatically phrased – seemed not to be getting any smaller.

A concluding remark: On the 20th of May 2005, the author will be speaking in Tylney Hall / Hampshire at the “Summer Retreat“ of the WorldOnlineGamblingLawReport on the topic „Germany – a gambling market on the verge of liberalisation“. The corresponding Power Point Presentation will be available soon on