Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge has asked to be given more time to respond to the charges of betting-related breaches levelled at him by the FA last week.
The 29-year-old international had been given until 6 pm on November 20 to respond to the chargers, but according to reports in the UK media, his representatives have asked the FA for an extension. It is believed that the FA’s judicial panel is in the process of considering the request. Sturridge is still available to play for Liverpool while the process is ongoing.
The full details of the case are not yet clear, though there has been speculation that the charges relate to betting activity that took place in the second half of January, which coincided with the time Sturridge spent on loan at West Bromwich Albion. A spokesman for Liverpool has asserted that the player denies ever having placed a bet on a football match.
But the stringent FA rules relating to betting also make it an offence to pass on relevant information to others betting on football. That could include any pertinent football issue, including transfers, team selection, managerial appointments and injuries.
The FA also has wide investigatory powers when it comes to potential breaches of the betting regulations, including the right to ask for access to phone records.
The rules that Sturridge has been accused of breaching are Rule E8(1)(a)(ii) and Rule E8(1)(b). Of the two, Rule E8(1)(a)(ii) is the more serious charge, as it relates to situations in which players directly or indirectly instruct or enable a bet on a football market to be placed. Rule E8(1)(b) deals with circumstances in which a player has relayed information that has been used for betting purposes without the player’s knowledge.
The investigation is the highest profile case involving a professional footballer since former player Joey Barton was charged with misconduct in 2016 for having placed over 1200 bets.
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