EPIC & Entain Foundation pens three-year player education deal with MLSPA

MLS game Austin FC vs LAFC
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EPIC Risk Management has continued its relationship with the Entain Foundation US to provide education programs to MLS players on the risks of gambling harms. 

The two organizations have signed a three-year partnership with the Major League Soccer Players’ Association (MLSPA) to provide personalized gambling harm education programs as well as advisory resources. 

“We are looking forward to working with the MLSPA and its membership in delivering this national program to provide crucial education and advice regarding the ever-growing relationship between wagering and professional sports in the US,” said Ben McGregor, Director of Sports Partnerships at EPIC Risk Management.

During the three-year program, EPIC will host prevention education and awareness sessions as well as offer players advisory and prevention resources. Entain Foundation will provide the funding to make these resources available to all MLSPA members throughout the entire scheme. 

Entain Foundation and EPIC Risk Management have run a similar program for college athletes after penning a deal with the NCAA last year to provide education services for the prevention of gambling harms. 

Now pro soccer players across the US will have access to similar tools as both EPIC and Entain Foundation seek to reduce the risk of gambling across sports. 

“This partnership with EPIC Risk Management and Entain Foundation US will enhance our ability to educate and equip our player pool as the presence and inherent risks of sports betting continue to evolve and permeate players’ lives,” said MLSPA COO Dan Jones.

“We look forward to working alongside them to ensure players have access to crucial education, resources, and support.”

EPIC also has significant experience in providing similar services in soccer, having worked with Premier League clubs such as Chelsea, Arsenal, and Manchester United, as well as the 72 English Football League clubs. 

Meanwhile, Entain Foundation has also worked with EPIC in soccer before, when they collaborated to support Chicago Fire players in the past. 

The Entain Foundation US was formed in 2019 to sponsor player education programs and help promote the risks of gambling harm across the nation, with Entain also having global foundations and a European hub. 

Martin Lycka, Trustee of the Entain Foundation US, explained: “Given the significant ongoing rise in the popularity of sports betting throughout the country, the importance of educating athletes and the public at large cannot be overstated. 

“We are glad that the funding provided by Entain Foundation US has helped EPIC, a global leader in the delivery of problem gambling education, to have such a huge impact on one of the highest-risk populations.”