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FA moves to ban players from betting on the game

Updated: Thursday, 10 Apr 2014 11:04 | Comments

Seven players from league clubs in the north-west of England were arrested last week in connection with an investigation into spot-fixing in games
Seven players from league clubs in the north-west of England were arrested last week in connection with an investigation into spot-fixing in games

The Football Association has proposed that from next season anyone involved in the top eight tiers of the English league system will be subject to a worldwide betting ban.

The FA Council on Wednesday unanimously agreed to the recommendation and the proposed rule will go before FA shareholders at the annual general meeting on 21 May.

If passed it would mean any participant from the Premier League down to the regional divisions of the Northern, Southern and Isthmian Leagues (step four of the FA pyramid) would be prohibited from any football-related gambling.

An FA statement read: "The FA has proposed that from next season, participants at Step 4 and above of the English league system will be banned from betting, either directly or indirectly, on any football match or competition anywhere in the world."

A blanket ban was suggested by former chairman David Triesman in 2009 and now is within weeks of becoming a reality.

The proposal follows consultation with the Premier League, Football League, Professional Footballers' Association, League Managers Association and Football Conference.

Currently, FA rules state that no participant can bet on a match or competition in which they are involved that season, while they are also prohibited from using or passing on inside information.

The FA statement added: "The changes to FA rules from the start of the 2014/15 season would also see a worldwide prohibition on betting on any other football-related matter, for example, the transfer of players, employment of managers or team selection.

"The passing of inside information to somebody that uses the information for betting remains prohibited."

The news comes on the day Tranmere sacked manager Ronnie Moore after he became the latest high-profile figure to breach existing betting rules.

England and Tottenham winger Andros Townsend, Newcastle's Dan Gosling and Cameron Jerome, who is on loan at Crystal Palace from Stoke, are all Premier League players who have been found to have breached current betting regulations.

FA director of football governance and regulation Darren Bailey said: "The proposed betting rule adjustment to encompass all aspects of world football provides a simple and straightforward message to all participants on where the line is drawn."

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