Ivan Toney Diagnosed with Gambling Addiction : A psychiatry expert diagnosed Brentford striker Ivan Toney with a gambling addiction, leading to a reduction of a proposed 15-month soccer playing ban to 8 months, England’s Football Association announced Friday.
The FA announced May 17 that Toney was banned eight months and fined about $61,000 for breaches of betting rules. He was charged with 262 breaches of the rules between 2017 and 2021. The FA withdrew 30 of those breaches and Toney admitted to the other 232.
The reasons for the FA’s Independent Regulatory Commission sanctions were published Friday morning.
That report stated that the FA pushed for a 15-month sanction, but the commission took into account Toney’s guilty plea and gambling addiction diagnoses, resulting in the reduction.
The report added that the FA said Toney should be suspended for a minimum of 12 months and said that there was “inadequate evidence of a gambling addiction to warrant any reduction.” The commission did not accept those submissions.
Dr. Philip Hopley interviewed Toney before his final diagnosis. The report stated that Hopley concluded Toney “needs professional help in respect to his addiction.”
“The commission finds that a significant reduction should be made to reflect the diagnosed gambling addiction identified by Dr. Hopley,” the report said.
“The lack of control the player has in respect of gambling is clearly a reflection of his diagnosed gambling addiction.”
The report stated that Toney placed 29 bets involving teams he played form, with 16 on those teams to win and 13 on them to lose. Toney did not play in the matches in which he bet on his team to lose. Toney also admitted to lying to the FA when he was questioned about his charges.
Toney will be suspended from games until Jan. 16, but is allowed to resume training on Sept. 17, 2023. His suspension can be appealed, but Brentford said Wednesday in a news release that it accepted the findings and will “provide support” for Toney and his family.
“We consider this matter closed and look forward to welcoming Ivan back to training in September and seeing him representing Brentford in the Premier League in January,” Brentford said.
The 27-year-old striker was born in Northampton, England. He made his senior team debut in 2012 for Northampton Town. He went on to play at Newcastle United from 2015 through 2018, with loans at Barnsley, Shrewsbury Tow, Scunthorpe United and Wigan Athletic. He played from 2018 to 2020 at Peterborough United prior to his time at Brentford.
Toney made his loan international appearance for England’s senior team in a 2-0 Euro 2024 qualifier win over the Ukraine on March 26 in London. He entered the game as a substitute in the 81st minute.
Brentford posted 14 wins, nine losses and 14 draws through 27 games and sits in ninth place in the Premier League with one week remaining in the season. The Bees will battle Manchester City, who already secured the league title, at 11:30 a.m. EDT Sunday in Brentford, England.
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