The Italian player Nicolò Fagioli, from Juventus, has been sanctioned with seven months without playing by the Prosecutor’s Office of the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) and must follow a rehabilitation course for five months for having bet on illegal online sites in addition to attending at least ten meetings called by the federation to discuss the negative effects of gambling. Likewise, he must pay a fine of 12,500 euros.
“Our players have to be sanctioned but not abandoned,” said Gabriele Gravina, the president of the federation. “All those who ask for help will have it: the FIGC must not only punish, but also accompany the healing process,” added the leader, who classified gambling addiction as “a social plague” which not only concerns Italy, but the entire world.
The young 22-year-old footballer has reached a plea agreement after acknowledging that he had bet on football matches, something expressly prohibited by the FIGC Sports Code. Fagioli assured that he never did it in any in which he was directly involved with his team, Juventus.
“Our players must be sanctioned but not abandoned,” said Gabriele Gravina, the federation president.
1.5 million addicts
Fagioli is the first punished. He was also the first person involved in the betting case, for which they are also being investigated. Nicolò Zaniolo (24 years old), who plays for Aston Villa and Sandro Tonali (23 years old), from Newcastle. The latter went to the Turin Prosecutor’s Office to give a statement after having done so, like Zaniolo, in Coverciano, the headquarters of the national team’s concentration. “These kids are children for me and they cannot become cannon fodder like they are,” explained Gravina, recalling that in Italy “there are 5.1 million gambling players, of which 1.5 million are sick from addiction.” “.
“I hope that this experience saves the life of Sandro, who has understood that he must face his problem decisively and has already started a path in this sense. I hope that it also saves the lives of those children, perhaps not so well off, who find themselves with the same error,” explained Giuseppe Riso, Tonali’s agent, who confirmed the player’s problem gambling, which is already being treated with specialists. Riso wanted to highlight “the support” that Newcastle was giving to the footballer.
Fagioli’s self-incrimination, his collaboration with the authorities and the recognition of his addiction when he learned that he was being investigated by the ordinary justice system through the Turin Prosecutor’s Office have been key to the reduction of the sanction, which in the Code of Sports Justice (article 24) contemplates a minimum of three years of disqualification. The footballer has managed to reduce the punishment of one year (seven months off the pitch and five of rehabilitation).
Without Fagioli or Pogba
The sanction is pending official confirmation by the Italian federation, which will occur when all the procedures have been completed, in which compliance is met. the deadline for appeal and the final approval of the FIGC federal council. Juventus, for its part, loses the midfielder for the entire season, which aggravates his sporting planning because he also stayed, a few weeks ago, without the also French midfielder Paul Pogba for having tested positive for testosterone.
Fagioli has started treatment against gambling since he is being investigated and, in addition, he has a person who controls his accounts to detect possible betting movements. Apparently, Fagioli only mentioned the name of Tonali, who allegedly provided him with the name of a mobile application and its installation to place bets.