Tottenham winger Andros Townsend has been banned from all football and football activity for four months, three of which are suspended, after breaching betting regulations.
An independent regulatory commission hearing imposed the sanction, which has been backdated to 23 May when he voluntarily withdrew from the England under-21 squad.
However, a statement released by the Football Association revealed that the three months of the ban have been suspended until 1 July 2016. They will be automatically invoked upon a proven breach of the FA’s betting rules during that period.
“Townsend, who was also fined £18,000, was charged for breaches of FA Rule E8(b) for misconduct in relation to betting, which he admitted and requested a personal hearing,” read the statement.
With Townsend’s ban effectively reduced to one month, the 21-year-old will be available for the start of the 2013-14 Barclays Premier League season.
Townsend used his Twitter account to say he would not appeal the sanctions. “Following a personal hearing at the FA, I fully accept the disciplinary action and shall not be appealing,” he wrote.
“This has been a regrettable experience from which I intend to come back stronger...now I’m fully focused on returning to football during pre-season and determined for this indiscretion to not tarnish my career.”
Townsend was not accused of betting on matches he had any involvement in, but the FA operates rules that forbid gambling on a wide spectrum of games.