Thomas Frank criticises Ivan Toney’s tough gambling ban conditions and compares them to prison
Brentford boss Thomas Frank has hit out at the strict conditions imposed on Ivan Toney following his ban.
The striker has been banned from football for eight months for breaching the Football Association’s betting rules.
Toney has recently been out of action for the Bees due to a hamstring injury, but can’t train with his teammates for four months.
The FA released the written reasons for his ban on Friday, with the 27-year-old being diagnosed as a gambling addict.
Following the commencement of his suspension, England boss Gareth Southgate said he would offer his support to the striker, even if it risked him being banned.
Frank agreed with the Three Lions manager, and said: “I’m bang on with Gareth [Southgate]. I think it was a fantastic point he made. Yes, Ivan did something wrong and got punished for it.
“What I don’t get at all, is how can you not let him be involved in football for the first four months?
“What do you gain from that? If you want to rehabilitate people, give them education. Now it’s like, there is a sanction, leave you to yourself, find out, die or survive.
“It’s not only Ivan. He is an example for all in the football world to learn from. We also need to review the relationship between football and gambling. I don’t have the answer.
“I don’t think it’s me who needs to answer that question. There is no doubt for me, the first four months he should be forced to go into 100 schools, talk about his background, football, everything. I think that is how it should work.
“I will go down on the same lines as Gareth Southgate. If I can’t speak to him, I guess they will have to ban me as well.
“If I’m not allowed to speak to him on a support level, there must be something wrong. I think you’re actually even allowed to contact people in prison, so I guess I’m allowed.”
After impressive season that saw him score 21 goals for Brentford, Toney will be set to return to action in January.
The Bees have also pledged their support and have vowed to help him with his gambling addiction.
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