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Football

27th Oct 2023

Sandro Tonali has “high chance” of playing this weekend, despite 10-month ban

Ryan Grace

Sandro Tonali

The Italian international was banned from football on Thursday

In a surprising turn of events, Newcastle head coach Eddie Howe has heavily hinted that 23-year-old midfielder Sandro Tonali could be involved in the Magpies trip to play Wolves in the Premier League this weekend.

Howe was speaking at a press conference ahead of Saturday’s 5.30pm kick-off at Molineux.

He confirmed there is a “high chance” Sandro Tonali will form part of the match-day squad.

Eddie HoweEddie Howe the manager/head coach of Newcastle United

Sandro Tonali – season might not be over just yet

Tonali joined Newcastle from AC Milan in July for £55 million.

Earlier this month, Juventus midfielder Nicolo Fagioli received a seven-month ban from the FIGC for betting breaches.

The FIGC has since confirmed that Sandro Tonali had also breached the rules which prohibits players placing bets on football events organised by FIGC, Uefa and Fifa, and he has also been fined 20,000 euros.

Tonali agreed to an 18-month disqualification. Eight months of which will be commuted to “a therapeutic plan” to help “recovery from gambling addiction”.

Despite all this, we could see him play in Newcastle’s midfield this weekend according to Eddie Howe:

“We’ve heard the news, the statement, but we haven’t had anything from the Italian authorities at the moment,” Howe said on Friday.

“I think there’s a high chance again that he could be available for us. I still think there are a few things that have to happen before the ban is imposed, so let’s see.”

Sandro TonaliNewcastle and Italy midfielder Sandro Tonali (Credit: Getty Images)

The ban is yet to be approved by governing bodies Uefa and Fifa.

So it appears that Newcastle are more than happy to squeeze every last drop of their £55 million man before they effectively lose him until next season.

Newcastle’s next three fixtures after the Wolves game sees them play Manchester United in the Carabao Cup, Arsenal in the Premier League, and Dortmund in the Champions League.

Eddie Howe will no doubt be hoping the paperwork is delayed for another while.

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