Daniel Sturridge left Turkish club Trabzonspor because he has been suspended from all football-related activity worldwide until the middle of June following a successful Football Association appeal over sanctions for breaching betting rules.
The former Chelsea and Liverpool striker was banned for six weeks last July for providing his family with inside betting information on his own transfer negotiations.
The FA were furious at the time as they wanted Sturridge to be suspended for at least six months for breaking betting regulations and launched an appeal.
English striker Daniel Sturridge, whose contract with Turkish club Trabzonspor was ended on Monday morning, has been suspended from all football-related activity until June
The Football Association has won an appeal against last year’s verdict that Sturridge broke gambling regulations by giving family members inside information on impending transfers
That appeal has now been upheld and Sturridge, whose club Trabzonspor announced a sudden break in his three-year contract on Monday morning, won’t be able to play anywhere in the world until the summer.
In addition, the original fine of £75,000 handed to the England forward has now been doubled to £150,000 by an independent Appeal Board.
A statement released by the FA read: ‘Daniel Sturridge has been suspended from all football and football-related activity from today until the end of 17 June 2020.
‘Following an appeal by The FA of the previous findings of the independent Regulatory Commission in this case, an independent Appeal Board has found that the Regulatory Commission misapplied The FA’s Rules in relation to the use of inside information and made findings of fact which could not be sustained.
FIFA has confirmed that Sturridge’s ban until the summer applies to all leagues worldwide
Trabzonspor confirmed Sturridge’s exit with a short 18-word tweet on Monday morning
‘As a result, the Appeal Board has found proven two further charges which were originally dismissed. Other factual findings of the Regulatory Commission were left undisturbed.
‘In relation to the sanction, the Appeal Board agreed with The FA that the penalty originally imposed on Mr Sturridge was unduly lenient and therefore increased his effective playing ban from two weeks to four months.
‘The Appeal Board also doubled the fine to £150,000.
‘The written reasons in this matter are available below and provide considerable detail in relation to all the charges and the Appeal Board’s determinations of them.
‘As will be clear, The FA takes any form of betting misconduct and the provision of inside information very seriously.
‘FIFA has confirmed that the suspension will be of worldwide effect.’
The striker has eight goals for England, including this one against Scotland in November 2016
Sturridge was part of the Chelsea squad that won the Champions League back in 2012
Sturridge helped Liverpool win the Champions League last season before his move to Turkey
Sturridge’s message to his brother Leon
‘Put the grand on Sevilla I’ll give it you back if you lose. But wait until 6pm. They’re having their meeting at 3 so will know for sure my outcome after that.’
An independent commission fined Sturridge £75,000 and banned him for six weeks, with four suspended, in July 2019.
The FA saw the sanction, which effectively allowed Sturridge to return to action within a fortnight, as lenient. He subsequently joined Trabzonspor from Liverpool.
The evidence, handed over to investigators by Sturridge during the original investigation, showed the 30-year-old had provided his brother with inside information regarding a possible loan move to Sevilla in January last year.
There were conversations between Sturridge and other family members and friends about possible moves away from Anfield to Sevilla and Inter Milan in January 2018. The messages often included references to betting and odds.
Had they been successful in placing all the bets, bookmakers would have lost more than £300,000.
In one WhatsApp message to his brother Leon, Sturridge said: ‘Put the grand on Sevilla I’ll give it you back if you lose. But wait until 6pm. They’re having their meeting at 3 so will know for sure my outcome after that.’
The Football Association’s verdict last year states that Sturridge (left) ‘instructed his brother, Leon (right), to bet on a possible move to Sevilla’ in the January transfer window in 2018
Detailed in the evidence was also the fact that Anthon Walters, the cousin of Sturridge’s father, tried to place a bet with Paddy Power for £13,830 on the player moving to Inter Milan. The bet was rejected.
The evidence continued: ‘However, shortly after 2am Anthon succeeded in placing a bet for £10,000 on the same transfer at odds of 17/10.’
Eighty-three other bets were placed or attempted to be placed on Sturridge moving to Inter Milan around that time.
The Inter Milan bets were placed prior to Sturridge’s representatives meeting and friends about possible moves away from Anfield in January 2018.
The messages often included references to betting and odds. Had they been successful in placing all the bets, bookmakers would have lost more than £300,000.
Sturridge will have to find a new club following his Trabzonspor exit and suspension
It seems the family members were not terribly successful. ‘The total sum wagered by those connected directly or indirectly to Mr Sturridge (‘the connected bettors’) was £13,755.82, returning £10,762.56,’ the commission stated.
‘In addition, the connected bettors attempted to place bets worth £20,560 on Mr Sturridge’s potential transfer moves.
‘These bets were refused. Had they been accepted, however, and had they been successful, these bets would have returned a further £317,006.
‘Even if Mr Sturridge did not know that the inside information was being used in this way, the FA submitted that he ought reasonably to have known that it would be.
‘This is particularly so in relation to his brother, Leon, who was a frequent recipient of the inside information in question.’
Sturridge faced 11 charges during the case last year, including nine that concerned alleged breaches of the inside information rule over the striker passing on details of transfers to family for betting purposes.
However, the independent commission dismissed those nine, finding Sturridge guilty of the other two concerning the information passed to his brother Leon.
At the time, the FA said they ‘respectfully disagrees with the Regulatory Commission’s findings and will be appealing against the charges which were dismissed and the sanction which was imposed.’