Conference on “Kick-off at the financial centre – the phenomenon of football” as part of the event series
As part of the event series FAZ forum, the second conference on “Kick-off at the financial centre – the phenomenon of football” took place on September 6. In the Frankfurt Villa Kennedy, decision makers from associations, clubs, and companies but also scientists and politicians. The participants of the football conference shared their different perspectives on the relevance of football to society. This year, Tipico was premium partner of the event.
Part of the plenum of the football conference were, among others, Hessian Minister for the Interior Peter Beuth, who spoke about the importance of sport in the context of social values like tolerance and freedom, as well as DFB president Reinhard Grindel, who identified fair play and integrity at all levels to be one of the major challenges of organised football in his speech. In this context, Grindelwald welcomed the proposal by the federal government of introducing criminal sanctions for competition manipulation and sport betting fraud.
Christian Gruber, Managing Director of Tipico Deutschland, discussed with the former Bundesliga referee Knut Kircher on integrity, transparency and responsibility in sport. Gruber explained that the core of the business model of sports betting is that nobody knows a match’s result in advance. In case noticeable reports of odds movements are reported, they are immediately forwarded to the associations in charge. If suspicions harden the respected matches are consequently removed from the programme.
”Whether in a club or a company, it is important to abide by a specific set of values. Same applies for football, which, being always a reflection of society also, cannot act outside the social values. If elbowing becomes socially accepted as a means to an end, the following of certain values becomes more and more difficult,” Gruber said referring to the debates on integrity and fair play going on in sports. Kircher agreed with him, “Integrity and fair play are a matter of attitude for me. In my opinion, behaving with integrity has to be increasingly integrated in the work with the youth teams at club level”.