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FA consider zero tolerance on players betting on matches

English football bosses are considering whether to tighten the rules about players betting on matches, reports BBC Sport. Under current regulations a footballer can gamble on any competition which his team is not involved in.

But the Football Association is considering whether to stop players placing wagers on football altogether.

Representatives of the FA, Premier League, Football League, players' union and League Managers Association are due to discuss the issue.

The FA says the meeting has been in the diary for some time and is not a response to the current spot-fixing allegations in international cricket.

A spokesman for the Premier League told the BBC that it was less vulnerable to corruption than some other leagues because of its huge worldwide audience and the high level of scrutiny which that inevitably brings.

But he said they were not complacent and would go into the meeting with an open mind about any proposal to strengthen the regulations on players betting.

The Professional Footballers Association is not yet convinced that a total ban is the best way forward.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 live, PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor said such a ban could be "a sledgehammer to crack a nut" and prove very difficult to police.

"I wonder if zero tolerance...will lead to problems with compliance, whether there will be more exposes, whether it would possibly drive it underground and leave the current situation diminished.

"At the moment we have a good link-up with the betting industry and if there are any particular patterns of betting on the game, warning signals are sent out," he commented.

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