Lucas Paquetá e a punição no futebol inglês
Imagem: West Ham / Divulgação

West Ham’s Brazilian midfielder Lucas Paquetá is at the center of a scandal that has rocked the football world. He is accused of four cases of match-fixing.

In other words, the player faces a legal battle that, if it results in his conviction, could lead to a lifetime suspension from the sport.

The seriousness of the accusations against Lucas Paquetá

The player insists on his innocence, but the English Football Association (FA) charge sheet suggests a severe punishment. Previous cases of match-fixing have resulted in exemplary punishments.

Stratford Town defender Kynan Isaac has been banned for ten years for betting on himself to be cautioned. Lincoln City’s Bradley Wood was banned for six years for deliberately receiving yellow cards in two FA Cup games.

In any case, FA representatives argue that the accusations against Lucas Paquetá are even more serious. SunSport has revealed details of the alleged betting scheme.

One of the bets was just £7 for Paquetá to receive a yellow card. He is accused of being intentionally cautioned in four Premier League games:

  • Against Leicester in 2022
  • Against Aston Villa in 2023
  • Against Leeds United in 2023
  • Against Bournemouth in 2023

Around 60 people bet that Lucas Paquetá would receive warnings in one or all of these matches, with bets ranging from £7 to £400.

The combined winnings from these bets totaled £100,000. Betway, West Ham’s main sponsor, was the first to identify suspicious betting patterns, leading to the investigation.

Consequences of possible punishment

The investigation has already had a significant impact on Paquetá‘s career, including the cancellation of an £80 million transfer to Manchester City. Thus, the player’s lawyers claim that the evidence against him is purely circumstantial.

The English entity’s investigation began a few months ago, following an integrity alert from gaming companies due to the unusual number of bets.

Paquetá has reportedly asked not to play in West Ham‘s opening game of this season against Bournemouth, claiming he is on the verge of a move to Manchester City.

Therefore, the FA and Paquetá’s legal representatives have been contacted, but the case has not yet been brought to a formal hearing. The investigation involves issues of jurisdiction and the collection of betting data here in Brazil.

For now, he has joined the Brazilian team and is expected to participate in the Copa América in the United States. But Paquetá’s career is at stake and the outcome of this case could define his future in football.

Specific Incidents

  • First Incident. West Ham 0 x 2 Leicester – Paquetá received a yellow card in the 60th minute for a foul on Boubakary Soumare.
  • Second Incident. West Ham 1 x 1 Aston Villa – In the 70th minute, Paquetá committed a foul on John McGinn.
  • Third Incident. West Ham 3 x 1 Leeds – In the 65th minute, Paquetá tripped Crysencio Summerville.
  • Fourth Incident. Bournemouth 1 x 1 West Ham – In the 93rd minute, Paquetá held the ball during an aerial dispute.