Semi-pro football team Gibraltar United is about to change the face of football by paying its players partially in cryptocurrency. The move comes as no surprise to the crypto world, as Pablo Dana – the club’s owner – is the co-founder and co-CEO of Quantacoin. His deep ties in the crypto world meant it was only a matter of time before his other business ventures began making crypto headlines. While Gibraltar United is a relatively small side, the country has a history of leading the way when it comes to technology and regulatory adoption. This could spur on other sports clubs around the globe to follow suit and start paying wages in crypto.
Gibraltar is at the Forefront of Innovation
For a long time, Gibraltar has been at the forefront of innovation of gaming and financial regulation. The country was the first to welcome the online gambling industry, almost 20 years ago. Since then, Gibraltar has gone on the lead the way with a wide variety of other matters. In fact, Gibraltar was the first country to regulate the crypto world and the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission established a new licensing system to regulate distributed ledger technology (DLT).
Implications for Transparency in Football
The football world has suffered heavily from a lack of transparency when it comes to the financial side of the game. Countries have been accused of bribing senior officials so they can host the world cup, and players have been accused of accepting bribes to throw games for betting purposes. With the implementation of cryptocurrency payments to all those involved in the football world, these corrupt individuals can be routed out – making the beautiful game fairer than ever before.
Other Uses for Blockchain in Sports
Blockchain and DLT could have a wider range of uses than simply preventing match-fixing and corruption. It could also be used in drug testing and result storage. Results of drug tests can be uploaded to the blockchain directly from the independent labs, removing the ability for players and clubs to tamper with the results. This has been an issue in most sports around the world, and isn’t exclusive to football. Russia has been repeatedly banned from events by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) for doping – Blockchain could help eliminate occurrences such as this.
Crypto Moving into the Sports Industry
Due to lower levels of viewership and game attendance, revenues from sporting events are slowly falling. This has led industry leaders to look for alternative ways for sports to continue being both profitable and enjoyable. Major League Baseball has turned to crypto to help boost revenues and team USA used cryptocurrency at the winter Olympics to help raise funds for the USA Luge Foundation. It won’t be long before we see more widespread crypto use in sports.
Crypto’s first dabble into the football world came in the form of an amateur Turkish football team completing the transfer of a player using Bitcoin. While crypto adoption is slowly increasing, it has the potential to solve many issues within the sporting world – as well as give players certain advantages when it comes to taxation. We love that Gibraltar United are leading the way and paying their players with cryptos, and we hope that other clubs follow suit!