By Villa News Speaking to Alan Hutton

19th Oct, 2023 | 5:10pm

FA could act on Nicolo Zaniolo after discussions with Aston Villa amid scandal

We’re delighted to welcome former Aston Villa full-back Alan Hutton as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Villa Park…

Nicolo Zaniolo could be the subject of an FA investigation after the Aston Villa loanee was caught up in a betting scandal, according to Alan Hutton.

The Daily Mail reported on Thursday (19 October) that Zaniolo, 24, is expected to be available for Sunday’s clash against West Ham even though he’s set to be questioned about alleged illegal betting in Italian football.

It is understood that the on-loan Galatasaray midfielder has held talks with Villa officials after being sent home from international duty early by the Italian FA last week.

Newcastle’s Sandro Tonali is also mixed up in the storm but he’s already admitting to placing bets on his former club AC Milan to win matches. Juventus’ Nicolo Fagiolo has already been banned for seven months for his role in the scandal.

Hutton wants players to receive all the necessary support but he does believe the FA will have to do something if Zaniolo is found to have committed any kind of wrongdoing.

“I read it and obviously I don’t know all the facts so it’s a little bit difficult to have a real opinion on it,” said Hutton to Villa News. “We’ll have to wait and see exactly what comes out.

But if you look at the likes of Tonali, who’s come out through his agent and said that there’s a problem and he’s trying to get help, we wish him all the best with that. Look, gambling addictions – these are serious things we’re talking about.

You hope he’s getting the right help to help him and that Newcastle will want to be there for him.

We’ll have to wait and see what happens. What teams were they betting on? We’ve seen what happened with the likes of Ivan Toney with betting so it’s not ideal.

Zaniolo is only on loan so we’ll have to wait and see.

If there are some kind of serious betting problems here, the FA will have to look into it.”

In other Aston Villa news, Louie Barry could be fighting for his future at Villa Park as his latest deal may be terminated early.