Sandro Tonali and Nicolo Zaniolo have been removed from ’s squad ahead of their crucial qualifier against after being quizzed by police over alleged betting breaches.
Tonali and Zaniolo both made the move to the this summer as Tonali was signed by Newcastle United in a £55 million deal from AC Milan, while Zaniolo joined Aston Villa on loan from Galatasaray.
Both Tonali and Zaniolo have been accused of gambling on football during their time in Italy, which could result in ban of at least three years if found guilty.
The two players were initially named in Italy’s squad for Euro 2024 qualifier against Malta on Saturday, as well as their match against England at Wembley next Tuesday.
But after being interviewed by police on Thursday, Italy’s football federation (FIGC) confirmed Tonali and Zaniolo have left the squad.
A statement from the FIGC read: ‘The Federation announces that, in the late afternoon of today, the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Turin has notified investigative acts to footballers Sandro Tonali and Nicolo Zaniolo, currently meeting with the national team at the Federal Technical Center of Coverciano.
‘Regardless of the allegations, we believe in this situation the players are not in the necessary condition to face the commitments scheduled in the next days. The Federation has decided, also to protect them, to allow them to return to their respective clubs.’
Even though both players are no longer playing in Italy, any ban would be enforced in UEFA and FIFA competitions.
Juventus midfielder Nicolo Fagioli is also under investigation by Italian authorities for alleged betting breaches.
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