Sandro Tonali IS training with Newcastle – after translation confusion from FIFA over midfielder’s 10-month international football ban in the wake of illegal gambling confession

Sandro Tonali is training with Newcastle after the club received clarity over the midfielder’s international football ban. 

The former AC Milan player was banned from competitive football last week for 10 months after admitting to illegal gambling offences, and will receive treatment for a ‘gambling addiction’ as part of the measures. 

The ban handed out from the Italian Football Federation allows Tonali to train with Eddie Howe’s Magpies despite not being able to feature for the side, but a translation issue caused concern as to whether this too could be restricted. 

However, the manager has confirmed that Tonali can still take part in group training, but has noted that it will be a tough ‘mental journey’ for the Italy international. 

‘He’s training with us,’ Howe confirmed ahead of Newcastle’s match-up with Arsenal at St James’ Park on Saturday. ‘And yeah, he’s started that sort of lonely – I say lonely, obviously he’s around his team-mates, but we’re playing so many games at the moment that a lot of his sessions will be individual with small numbers.

Sandro Tonali will be allowed to continue training with Newcastle after receiving his ban

Eddie Howe warned of the difficult 'mental journey' for his high-profile summer signing

Eddie Howe warned of the difficult ‘mental journey’ for his high-profile summer signing

‘He’s started that journey really into the next 10 months. 

‘It’s going to be a real mental journey for him to try and come through that and to try and come through that a better player.

‘That’s definitely our objective as coaches, to try and help him, but it’s going to be difficult for him, for sure.’

Tonali joined the Tyneside club over the summer from Milan to the tune of £55million, but will be ruled out for the remainder of the season in a blow to Howe’s multi-competition aspirations. 

Juventus midfielder Nicolo Fagioli was also handed a seven-month ban for illegal gambling

Juventus midfielder Nicolo Fagioli was also handed a seven-month ban for illegal gambling

The player’s ban will also include eight months of therapy, and a £10,000 fine, and – like his Italy team-mate Nicolo Fagioli, who also received a ban – after the treatment, Tonali will be expected to speak to youth groups about the pitfalls of illegal gambling. 

In May, Brentford striker Ivan Toney received an eight-month betting ban and only returned to training after four months of the suspension was served.

Toney was hit with the hefty ban and a £50,000 fine after accepting 232 breaches of the FA’s betting rules.

As part of the punishment he was unable to train with his club for the first half of the ban but worked hard away from Brentford and was recently pictured training alone ahead of a significant step on his comeback trail. 


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