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Ajax players gamble using NFTs

NFTs have somehow managed to blur the lines between gambling and digital ownership. Crypto gambling has been regulated to industry standards; however, NFTs can be a threat, especially if they’re not entirely regulated across every industry. And without clear guidance, things can get murky quickly.

ajax football dappgambl
ajax football dappgambl

NFT and gambling are causing problems

Unlike traditional gambling platforms, NFTs are unregulated, and they’ve been incorporated into almost every monetized or unmonetized digital game. NFTs can be considered a gambling tool because of their volatile price swings.

Now, football players from the Ajax Amsterdam club are being accused of participating in gambling activities. Under football federation rules, players are forbidden to bet on their own games. However, because NFTs are not yet categorized as gambling means, they give players more freedom.

Two Ajax players, Davy Klaasen and Daley Blind are accused of trying to profit financially from NFTs after disclosing part of the starting line-up before the game. But why would that matter?

Sorare has developed a blockchain-based fantasy football game that integrates trading cards as NFTs. The platform has raised $600 million in investments valuing the company at over $4 billion. 

There has been some exciting activity on the Sorare platform ahead of Sunday’s Dutch Cup final, where Ajax lost 2-1 to PSV Eindhoven. According to The Athletic, Ajax players have bought NFT cards of Ajax’s backup goalies Maarten Stekelenburg.

As the NFTs were picked up, their prices increased as Stecklenburg was starting the game as the main goalkeeper. Thus, Stecklenburg NFT became a hot prospect and could yield some good profits for the players or users who bought them.

Even though the profit from trading card NFTs might be smaller than the average salary of an Ajax, the issue is that players are able to conduct gambling activities despite being restricted from doing so.

According to a Dutch Football Association comment, players are indeed banned from gambling; however, because Sorare does not fall under the gambling rules, players cannot be held accountable.

This phenomenon is being investigated further. Despite not being considered a gambling activity, Sorare told athletes, that they’re taking appropriate actions to limit foul play and prevent misinterpretation.

Labelling NFTs as gambling

NFTs and cryptocurrencies are not labelled as gambling tools. Cryptocurrencies are utility tokens, and NFTs are intended to provide proof of ownership. However, because they’re part of unregulated activities, NFTs can be highly volatile as buyers and sellers use speculation to profit.

Regular cryptocurrency casinos are partly regulated. Similarly, an NFT was banned by the SEC in the state of Texas for being considered a security. Overall, NFTs are starting to be recognized as gambling or speculative tools, and we could soon see more regulation on the use of NFTs.

Vlad Hategan
Vlad Hategan - NFT Gaming Specialist
153 Articles

Vlad has been active in the crypto space since early 2013 with a hands-on approach since late 2017. His focus has always been being able to showcase the value crypto brings to our digital landscape. That's why he tried almost every possible category from mining to NFT and ICOs - back in the day. In short, he enjoys every part of the blockchain space, from the community to the nitty gritty technological details.

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Reviewed and Fact Checked by Eugene Abungana , Investment Analyst, Financial Analyst, and Institutional Trader