Paqueta ‘devastated’ as report claims ‘life ban’ is possible if he’s found guilty of ‘betting scam’

Lewis Oldham
West Ham Paqueta
Lucas Paqueta in action for West Ham United.

West Ham star Lucas Paqueta – who has been heavily linked with Man City – is reportedly facing a ‘life ban’ if found guilty of his alleged betting offences.

The Hammers paid around £51m to sign Paqueta from Ligue Un outfit Lyon during the 2022 summer transfer window.

On the pitch, Paqueta has proven to be a great signing as he’s grabbed 13 goals and 14 assists in his 84 appearances for the Premier League.

His form fuelled speculation linking him with a £85m move to Premier League champions Man City, but this proposed transfer has been ‘derailed’ as he’s been ‘charged with breaching betting rules’.

It was noted that the FA’s investigation was ‘triggered by suspicious betting patterns surrounding an injury-time yellow card received by Paqueta in West Ham’s 1-1 draw at Bournemouth on the opening day of the season last August’.

The report added: ‘In addition to Paqueta’s booking for shoving Bournemouth’s Illia Zabarnyi the FA also investigated bets on two yellow cards he received last season; one for a late challenge on John McGinn in a 1-1 draw with Aston Villa on March 11 and another for fouling Leeds’ Crysencio Summerville on May 21.

‘Paqueta’s case will be heard by an independent commission and he could be given a ban if found guilty. While Ivan Toney received an eight-month ban for betting on football last year it is understood that Paqueta has not been accused of placing any bets himself.’

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According to a report from The Sun, ‘extraordinary details’ of the ‘alleged betting scam’ suggest the FA ‘want to ban Paqueta for life’.

It is noted that the ‘FA charge sheet includes a recommendation that he be banned for life if found guilty’.

The report claims the FA believe Paqueta’s potential offences are ‘even more serious’ than the case involving Stratford Town defender Kynan Isaac, which resulted in him being ‘given a ten-year suspension for betting on himself to be booked in an FA Cup tie in 2021’.

‘Paqueta is accused of deliberately getting booked in four Premier League games — against Leicester in 2022, plus Aston Villa, Leeds United and Bournemouth, all in 2023 — to make money for friends.

‘It is understood around sixty people placed bets on Paqueta to be booked in one or all of those matches, with the stakes ranging from just £7 to £400, leading to combined winnings of £100,000. And in an ironic twist, the first gaming company to sound the alarm over suspicious betting patterns was Betway — the Hammers’ main shirt sponsor.

‘The series of small bets were placed on Paqueta Island off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, sparking an investigation which resulted in the FA’s charges of spot-fixing.

‘Over six months elapsed between the FA charging Ivan Toney with betting offences before he was found guilty last summer. And given that Paqueta’s career is at stake, this case is likely to take even longer.

‘There are also issues of jurisdiction to resolve, with the FA still in the process of collecting betting data from Brazil. Paqueta has been left devastated by the charges, with West Ham having serious concerns over his mental wellbeing.’

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