December 8 – Anti-doping prosecutors in Italy have requested a maximum four-year ban for Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba after the French 2018 World Cup winner tested positive for testosterone.
Pogba, 30, was provisionally suspended in September and a month later a B sample confirmed the presence of the substance.
Pogba opted not to make a plea bargain with Italy’s anti-doping agency, meaning the case will be tried before the country’s anti-doping court. If the four-year ban is confirmed, it could end his career.
The 2018 World Cup winner’s sample was reportedly taken at his club’s opening match of the Serie A season, a win at Udinese on August 20, during which he was an unused substitute.
Pogba’s representatives said the testosterone came from a food supplement prescribed by a doctor he consulted in the United States.
Under the World Anti-Doping Code, Pogba is liable to a four-year suspension, which could be halved if he proves that he was not at fault. The ban could even be limited to a few months if the use of the substance took place “out of competition and is not related to his level of performance”.
Since the announcement of his positive test, Pogba has been unable to train with Juventus, where he returned in July 2022 after six seasons with Manchester United. Juve have also suspended payment of his estimated annual salary of €8 million.
The doping case is another huge blow for a player who has been hit by injury ever since rejoining Juventus. He was ruled out of France’s run to the World Cup final last year due to a knee injury and played in only six Serie A matches last season.
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