Premier League

Could Newcastle sack Sandro Tonali over illegal betting?

Sandro Tonali

Newcastle United’s marquee signing of the summer, Sandro Tonali, is facing an uncertain future at St James’ Park.

The £55m midfielder is involved in a betting scandal that is wreaking havoc in Italy and he is one of the players under investigation by the Italian authorities, alongside Aston Villa loanee Nicolo Zaniolo.

With the Federal Prosecutor’s Office still conducting their enquiries, there are plenty of questions to be answered. But Tonali has admitted to the authorities that he put bets on matches involving former club AC Milan – games he’s not believed to have played a part in himself – and that’s likely to lead to a significant ban from the game.

Juventus’ Nicolo Fagioli has already received a seven-month ban – he has subsequently revealed that Tonali introduced him to an illegal betting app and that debt collectors had threatened to break his legs – and Tonali is expected to receive a similar sentence for co-operating, rather than the maximum three-year worldwide ban that could be applied in this scenario.

The question for Newcastle is what they do next. Could they go as far as to sack Tonali or is it more likely they will stand by their player as he attempts to navigate through what’s clearly a difficult period in his life?

Sandro Tonali

Tonali had to withdraw from international duty / Claudio Villa/GettyImages

Having joined up with the Italy squad over the international break, Tonali was unable to feature against Malta or England during Euro 2024 qualifying, instead returning home from the national team camp due to the seriousness of allegations against him.

Tonali is accused of breaching article 24 of the Code of Sports Justice, which states that it prohibits “the subjects of the federal system, managers, members, and members of clubs belonging to the professional sector from making or accepting bets, directly or indirectly, even from persons authorised to receive them, which have as their object results relating to official matches organised within the framework of the FIGC, FIFA, and UEFA.”

The 23-year-old hasn’t spoken publicly, but has admitted to authorities that he bet on football matches involving former club AC Milan. His agent Giuseppe Riso has also confirmed that his client has a gambling addiction. stating at event at the Italian Embassy in London: “The federation is standing by Sandro. He is playing his most important game – against betting addiction. He’s in shock, he’s very sad.”

Tonali is facing a lengthy ban having initially denied ever…

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