The odds when betting on professional football might be weighted slightly in the favour of people with lots of lots of money, revealed European police yesterday.
The news is likely to shatter the illusion that many have long-held that the world of gambling is a fairytale land of kindness and fair play.
Regular gambler Simon Williams told us, “Betting shops have always been such friendly places, where everyone is known by name and the bookmaker is pleased to see you. I can’t believe for one second they’ve been taking advantage of me?”
“Sure, I’ve never seen a poor bookmaker, and my one drives a Bentley – but I assumed he must have won the lottery rather than engaging in a business where the odds are deliberately, and permanently, stacked in his favour.”
“This news is a revelation!”
The European police investigation is likely to find that bookmakers regularly fix odds at rates where they know in advance they will make money from ill-advised ‘punters’.
A spokesperson explained, “We’ve uncovered systematic abuse of the European sports fan, where money has been taken on bets that have absolutely no chance giving a return.”
“Only this morning we found one bookmaker offering to take £100 bets on an Aston Villa victory.”