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Sligo Rovers have taken the decision to distance themselves from the gambling industry. 

The SSE Airtricity Premier Division club say it would be "irresponsible" to accept such deals.

The gambling industry's close ties to professional sport have come under increasing scrutiny and criticism, and the decision to walk away from such sponsorship deals is no longer uncommon.

Last year, League One club Bolton Wanderers became one of the first English clubs to say they will no longer be accepting sponsorship from gambling companies. They also removed gambling facilities from their stadium.

Two of the League of Ireland's biggest clubs - Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk - both have gambling firms' logos adorn the front of their jerseys.

Former players were among those to criticise the Hoops' race horse naming stunt in tandem with 888sport. Meanwhile, Dundalk are sponsored by BetRegal.

“Sligo Rovers have taken the decision not to accept sponsorship from gambling companies," a statement read.

“The Bit O’ Red have turned down two large sponsorship offers from gambling companies in the last number of months as we move to formalise this policy.

“As a community-funded club, we believe it would be irresponsible to accept these proposals.

“Sponsorship is a critical aspect in the running of Sligo Rovers and turning down five-figure sponsorship offers is not a straight-forward decision, particularly given the club is self-funded with no individual benefactor like many others in the League of Ireland.

“The ethos of our club is to be inclusive and open to welcome all ages and demographics. We feel such advertising, directly aimed at our supporters and particularly to our young fans, could have a detrimental outcome going forward and is not in the spirit of the football club.”

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