Gianluigi Buffon backs Italian footballers from betting ban


Ex-Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has spoken in favour of gambling footballers, who he believes should not be banned for placing bets on specific sports.

Italian goalkeeping legend Gianluigi Buffon has spoken against the treatment of his compatriots Nicolo Fagioli and Sandro Tonali after the pair were banned from football for several months due to gambling offences. 

The veteran ex-goalkeeper has reiterated his belief that the players did not need to be banned, as betting should not be seen as a crime.

According to Fonza Juventus on X, Gianluigi Buffon, a legendary Italian goalkeeper, has defended Fagioli and Tonali amidst the betting scandal. Buffon’s stance is that betting in itself is not a crime.

He highlighted the paradox of gambling advertisements being prevalent in stadiums and broadcasts, yet players face severe punishments for certain betting activities.

Buffon further emphasised the need to distinguish between different types of gambling activities and to understand the real issue of gambling addiction, saying, ​”If, on the other hand, a footballer bets on football, he faces punishment, and rightly so; but if he bets on volleyball, basketball, dog racing… he is not committing a crime.”

Nicolo Fagioli, a Juventus midfielder, received a seven-month ban and a €12,500 fine for betting offences. He breached the sporting justice code by betting on football matches. Fagioli also agreed to participate in a therapeutic plan and attend public meetings as part of his rehabilitation​​, as per reports from Football Today.

Sandro Tonali, who moved to Newcastle United from AC Milan, admitted to betting on football matches during his time at Milan and Brescia and was banned for a similar amount of time as Fagioli, putting the Magpies season in disarray.