UEFA probes reports of Ibrahimovic stake in online betting site

April 27 – Veteran Swedish international striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is facing a UEFA probe into “alleged financial interest in a betting company” and could face a three-year ban if found guilty.

Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet Bild claimed the AC Milan striker was a part-owner of Maltese-based gambling website Bethard.

UEFA and FIFA specifically ban players from having any financial interest in betting.

“A UEFA ethics and disciplinary inspector has today been appointed to conduct a disciplinary investigation regarding a potential violation of the UEFA disciplinary regulations by Mr Zlatan Ibrahimovic for having an alleged financial interest in a betting company,” a UEFA statement said.

Last week Ibrahimovic, who has scored 17 goals in 25 appearances in all competitions this season,  signed a new contract that will run until after his 40th birthday.

Ibrahimovic quit international football after the 2016 European Championship but returned to Sweden’s national team for their World Cup qualifiers last month. If he is banned, it would effectively end his football career.

Meanwhile, in an unrelated case, Ibrahimovic has been fined €4,000 for his part in a spat with Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku during a Coppa Italia match in January.

The pair were involved in a number of exchanges and Ibrahimovic, who denied using racist language, was eventually sent off.  Lukaku was charged with “unsportsmanlike behaviour with provocative phrases” by the Italian Football Federation and fined €3,000.

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