Lucas Paqueta DENIES placing bets on football himself with the FA investigating the West Ham star for potential betting breaches, as his £70m Man City move collapses
Lucas Paqueta has denied placing bets himself after the FA launched an investigation into the West Ham star allegedly gambling on football.
Manchester City were interested in signing Paqueta this summer after approaching his club with a £70million offer, with the Premier League champions said to have increased their interest after the injury to Kevin De Bruyne.
Yet it emerged on Friday morning that talks over the move had collapsed with sources citing ‘confidential’ issues.
It can now be confirmed that the 25-year-old Brazilian is the subject of an FA investigation over potential betting rule breaches. The specifics are yet to be revealed while West Ham nervously wait to see if it will lead to Paqueta being charged by the authorities.
Sources close to Paqueta say he denies placing any bets on football himself. It is thought the investigation is focused on bets placed in Brazil.
Lucas Paqueta’s (left) summer move from West Ham to Manchester City has fallen through
Paqueta is pictured this summer with his partner Duda Fournier at a friend’s wedding. He denies placing bets on football
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Paqueta impressed in West Ham’s season-opening 1-1 draw at Bournemouth last weekend. He was substituted in the fourth minute of stoppage time, seconds after receiving a yellow card for handling the ball directly from Alphonse Areola’s goal-kick.
It remains to be seen if Paqueta will line up against Chelsea at the London Stadium on Sunday following Mail Sport’s revelations.
He cost a club-record £51m when West Ham signed him from Lyon last summer and was a key player in their Europa Conference League triumph, assisting Jarrod Bowen for his last-minute winner in Prague.
It was widely reported on Friday morning that talks between West Ham and City had been placed on hold. The reason cited was that the Hammers wanted more than £85m for the player.
West Ham manager David Moyes (left) explained there had been interest in Paqueta (right) from Man City
City’s pursuit for the Brazilian international intensified after losing Kevin De Bruyne to injury
Paqueta was being discussed as a temporary replacement for De Bruyne, who faces up to four months on the sidelines after a serious hamstring injury.
Asked about Paqueta at his pre-Chelsea press conference on Friday, manager David Moyes said: ‘I admitted last week that there had been an enquiry from Manchester City but I’ve got no more to add to that at this moment in time.’
Mail Sport contacted the FA and West Ham on Friday, and we are contacting Paqueta’s camp for comment.
Brentford striker Ivan Toney was banned from football for eight months after admitting 232 breaches of the FA’s betting rules. He is not due to return until January and Toney was diagnosed as a gambling addict.