Brentford striker Ivan Toney has been handed an eight-month football ban expiring in 2024 as a consequence of his admission to contravening the Football Association's betting regulations.
In addition, Toney has also been fined to the sum of £50,000 and cautioned about his future behaviour after an astounding 232 violations of the FA's betting rules.
The suspension is with immediate effect, though the 27-year-old will be permitted to resume training with Brentford four months prior to its official conclusion. Toney will however not be eligible to participate in any matches until January 17, 2024.
A statement released by the FA reveals that Toney's sanctions were implemented by an independent Regulatory Commission subsequent to a personal hearing. The Commission's written justifications for these penalties will soon be made public, prompting the FA to withhold further comments until a more thorough review has been conducted of the breaches.
Toney's transgressions, for which he has been found guilty, occurred between February 25, 2017, and January 23, 2021. This period of his professional tenure varied between a number of football league clubs including Scunthorpe United, Wigan Athletic, Peterborough United, and most recently Brentford. Information on whether the gambling was associated with those clubs directly or not is still being withheld.
In terms of Toney's professional career, he has been on demanding form, scoring 20 goals in 33 Premier League appearances this season, contributing significantly to Brentford's current league position, where they currently sit 9th in the table.
As a result of the ban, Toney will be absent from Brentford's upcoming match against Spurs and will also miss the final game of the season at home to the current league leaders and prospective champions, Manchester City, on the 28th of May.
Brentford have acknowledged the FA's decision and will wait for the publication of the written explanations before contemplating their next due action.
This situation however, is nothing new within the realm of the football league as similar incidents have arose within the FA in recent years, too. Cases relating to Newcastle and England defender Kieran Trippier and current League One Bristol Rovers head coach Joey Barton spring to mind. Toney now has the opportunity to rest and return to Brentford in the next Premier League season in even better form and finally focus on performances rather than worrying about any looming punishments at the conclusion of his suspension.