European football’s governing body UEFA has opened a disciplinary investigation into Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s “alleged financial interest in a betting company.”
The AC Milan striker reportedly owns a stake in Bethard and in March 2018 was officially announced as an “active ambassador” for the firm.
At the time of that announcement, the Malta-based gambling website said Ibrahimovic would also engage in the “on-going development of the company’s offering.”
“In accordance with Article 31(4) of the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations (DR), a UEFA Ethics and Disciplinary Inspector has today been appointed to conduct a disciplinary investigation regarding a potential violation of the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations by Mr. Zlatan Ibrahimović for having an alleged financial interest in a betting company,” UEFA said in a statement.
FIFA regulations state that anyone found guilty of betting breaches could face a suspension from football of up to three years and a fine of up to $119,000.
“As a general policy, FIFA’s judicial bodies don’t speculate on the application of the FIFA Code of Ethics or any other regulation,” a FIFA spokesperson told CNN.
Article 12 of UEFA’s Disciplinary Regulations states: “The integrity of matches and competitions is violated, for example, by anyone who participates directly or indirectly in betting or similar activities relating to competition matches or who has a direct or indirect financial interest in such activities.”
Ibrahimovic’s agent referred CNN Sport to his club AC Milan, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment about UEFA’s investigation. Bethard did not immediately respond to CNN’s request for comment.
Last week, Ibrahimovic signed a one-year contract extension at Milan that will enable him to play beyond his 40th birthday.