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FA hands suspended ban to Forest’s Toffolo over betting breaches

| By Robert Fletcher
The English Football Association (FA) has issued a suspended five-month ban to Nottingham Forest defender Harry Toffolo after he admitted to 375 breaches of its betting rules.
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The ban is suspended to the end of the 2024-25 season. Toffolo is also being fined £20,956 (€24,374/$26,202) over the case.

Toffolo was charged in July for allegedly placing bets on football matches between 22 January 2014 and 18 March 2017.

FA Rule E8 says players, match officials or coaches must not bet, either directly or indirectly, on any matters related to football anywhere in the world. Toffolo had been given until 19 July to respond to the charges.

The 28-year-old represented Premier League club Forest in 2022. He was playing for several clubs on loan during the period highlighted by the FA.

Loaned out by Norwich City, he played for Swindon Town, Rotherham United, Peterborough United and Scunthorpe United. All these clubs play in the lower leagues, outside the top-tier Premier League.

Toffolo has only played once for Forest once so far during the 2023-24 season, coming on as a substitute in the 1-0 League Cup defeat to Burnley last month.

Brentford’s Ivan Toney serving eight-month ban for betting

The decision comes after Brentford and England striker Ivan Toney was also banned for breaching FA rules on betting.

Toney was handed an initial 11-month ban after being charged with 262 breaches of Rule E8. He was not playing for Premier League Brentford at the time of the violations.

The FA identified an initial 232 breaches before more breaches were added in December 2022. A total of 30 breaches were subsequently withdrawn and Toney admitted to the remaining 232.  

The ban was then reduced to eight months after the player was officially diagnosed with a gambling addiction. Toney was also fined £50,000 (€57,559/$62,340) and warned about his future conduct.

The ban runs through to 16 January next year, although Toney will be able to resume training with his teammates from 17 September.

Also in recent months, Port Vale defender Mitch Clark was given a suspended three-month ban and £600 fine for a betting violation.

Clark admitted placing 312 bets on football matches while playing for Accrington Stanley between February 2022 and March 2023. While almost all of Clark’s bets involved other teams, on one occasion the player bet on his own team to lose.

The FA suspended the three-month ban for two years, pending any more violations of its betting rules.

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