What sanctions have been imposed on Ivan Toney?
On 16 November 2022, the Football Association (“the FA”) confirmed that it had charged Ivan Toney with misconduct in relation to 232 breaches of the FA’s betting rules. A hearing took place before the FA’s Regulatory Commission on 16 May 2023 to determine the charges.
Mr Toney admitted the 232 charges against him relating to breaches of Rule E8 (see our article on misconduct), with 30 of the original 262 breaches having been withdrawn by the FA. The Regulatory Commission has decided to suspend Mr Toney from all football-related activity for 8 months. The ban imposed on Mr Toney will take immediate effect and will be in place until 16 January 2024. Mr Toney will however be permitted to return to training only with his club from 17 September 2023.
The Regulatory Commission has also imposed a fine of £50,000 on Mr Toney and given him a warning as to his future conduct.
Both Mr Toney and Brentford FC have said that they currently awaiting the publication of the written reasons of Regulatory Commission and will review them before considering their next steps.
The FA’s betting sanctions guidelines have not been updated since the 2014/15 season and, despite the guidance, the outcome in a betting case has been found to vary significantly depending on the type of bets placed and the individual circumstances.
Until the written reasons for the Regulatory Commission’s decision have been published, we will not know the rationale behind the 8-month suspension. However, the length of the ban suggests that some of the 232 breaches were considered to be on the serious end of the scale. For example, as outlined in our previous article on the FA’s rules on betting, Kieran Trippier was suspended for 10 weeks and Daniel Sturridge was suspended for 4 months following their respective breaches of the FA’s betting rules. Whereas Joey Barton, who had placed 1260 bets over a period of 10 years, was suspended for 13 months.