The future of betting cases in football: What can we learn from Ivan Toney's case?
The announcement in November 2022 that Ivan Toney had been charged with 232 breaches of The FA’s betting regulations (with a further 30 charges added in December 2022) prompted a wave of commentary amid the ongoing debate surrounding the relationship between football and gambling sponsors, the Premier League clubs’ decision to remove gambling sponsors from the front of shirts,1 and with the English Football League announcing a five-year extension to its partnership with SkyBet.2 Whilst some called for Toney to face a lengthy ban, others pointed out the potential irony in the fact that many of Toney’s clubs over the relevant period had been sponsored by betting companies.
However, until the Regulatory Commission, of The Football Association of England, written reasons were published on 23 May 2023, the nature of the bets placed by Mr Toney – the single most important factor in determining the appropriate sanction – was unknown.
This article first considers (by reference to Toney) the kind of evidence that can be collated by The FA in betting cases, before considering the nature of the bets placed by Mr Toney, reviewing what is revealed by the Regulatory Commission’s written reasons, and finally providing some commentary on Mr Toney’s sanction and the decision to allow him to return to training after four months.
The Regulatory Commission’s written reasons in Toney are available here.3 The Commission was made of three independent panel members: David Casement K.C. (Chairperson) – Independent Specialist Panel Member, Abdul Shaffaq Iqbal K.C. – Independent Legal Panel Member and Stuart Ripley – Independent Football Panel Member.
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- Tags: Athlete Welfare | Betting | Dispute Resolution | Football | Gambling Law | Regulation & Governance | Sport | The FA's Disciplinary Regulations | The Football Association (The FA) | United Kingdom (UK)
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