Daniel Sturridge ‘devastated’ by four-month ban for breaching betting rules

Former striker Daniel Sturridge says he is “devastated” after being banned from football for four months for breaching betting rules.

He originally given a six-week ban last summer, four of them suspended, but the FA appealed against the findings of an independent commission.

An appeal board also doubled the 30-year-old’s fine to £150,000.

Sturridge’s contract with Turkish side Trabzonspor had been terminated by mutual agreement earlier on Monday.

a video posted on his YouTube account Sturridge said it had been “a crazy few days” after the “disappointing and upsetting” decision ended his season.

He added: “I just want to say it’s been a very long and drawn process over the last couple of years and difficult to concentrate on my football.

“I’m going to continue to campaign for professional footballers to be able to speak to their families and close friends freely, without the real risk of being charged.

“I feel the betting companies and the practice and process of people placing bets on players moving clubs has to be stopped.”

He thanked Trabzonspor but added he felt “uncomfortable” continuing to receive wages from the club due to being unable to “contribute”.

Sturridge had faced various charges alleging he passed on inside information over a potential transfer January 2018.

A statement from the FA said the appeal board had ruled the commission “misapplied rules relation to the use of inside information and made findings of fact which could not be sustained”.

As a , the board found proven two further charges that had originally been dismissed.

announced in June 2019 that Sturridge – who scored eight times in 26 appearances for – would be leaving the club that summer the end of his contract.

He went on to score seven goals in 16 appearances for six-time Turkish champions Trabzonspor.

The former Manchester City and Chelsea forward’s most recent appearance came as a substitute in a World Cup qualifier against Lithuania in October 2017.

Sturridge has been suspended from all football and football-related activity until the end of 17 June.

The commission found he had instructed his Leon to bet on a possible move to Spanish side Sevilla, and that he had given him inside information during the January 2018 transfer window.

Sturridge said the FA’s case “overblown and misconceived” and that he gave an innocent explanation for text messages to his .

Submissions on his behalf said he did not have the type of personality that is drawn to adrenaline or the risk of wrongdoing, and had no real in gambling.

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