The man who sent Brentford star Evan Toney a racist message on Instagram will be banned from attending any football matches in England for three years in a landmark police decision. It covers all levels of regulated football in the United Kingdom – Premier League, Championship, League One, etc. – and all home international matches in England.
He also received a prison sentence of four months to two years for his crimes.
Antonio Neal, 24, pleaded guilty to sending the messages on January 25 Which Tony shared on social media following a 2–0 win over Brighton on 14 October. Tony scored both the goals in that match. Police quickly investigated the claim and Neil later apologized for his actions. before a judge. Neill has also been barred from traveling abroad to watch English international friendlies, qualification matches and tournaments.
This is the first major punishment under the relatively new Police, Crime, Punishment and Courts Act 2022Which gives the police more powers over a wide range of public safety related situations like protests and child abuse.
The club said, “Brentford FC is pleased to see the Antonio Neill case resolved and Northumbria Police’s efforts to bring it to a conclusion.” in a statement on Tuesday, “Court attendance sets a strong precedent for anyone else who commits a hate crime and it is our hope that the severity of punishment will increase until this type of crime is eliminated.
“Ivan Toney has been subject to abhorrent racist abuse on a regular basis, and we want to see strong action against anyone found guilty of such abuse. The club firmly believes that there is no place for racial abuse in football We have not and we continue to support and enforce a zero-tolerance policy towards discriminatory behavior of any kind.”
Tony, 26, is third in the English Premier League with 15 goals this season behind Manchester City’s Erling Haaland (28) and Tottenham’s Harry Kane (20).
However, he has been the subject of a betting investigation by the FA – England’s football governing body. Tony was charged with over 200 violations since 2017. He has since admitted to gambling, although he contested he will face a six-month ban,