Sutton United goalkeeper Wayne Shaw is being investigated by the Gambling Commission over a possible breach of regulations following his actions in the FA Cup match against Arsenal on Monday night.
Footage of Shaw, 46, eating a pie while he sat on the bench made headlines as the colourful 23-stone keeper continued to make a name for himself around the fifth-round match.
A bookmaker, who sponsored Sutton for the match, had offered odds of 8/1 that Shaw would eat a pie on camera during the televised contest, which finished 2-0 to Arsenal.
Shaw explained after the match:
” A few of the lads said to me earlier on: ‘What is going on with the 8-1 about eating a pie? I said: ‘I don’t know, I’ve eaten nothing all day, so I might give it a go later on.’ As I say, Sun Bets had us at 8-1 to eat a pie. I thought I would give them a bit of banter and let’s do it. All the subs were on and we were 2-0 down. I think there were a few people. Obviously we [Sutton’s players] are not allowed to bet. I think a few of the mates and a few of the fans. It was just a bit of banter for them. It is something to make the occasion as well and you can look back and say it was part of it and we got our ticket money back.”
FA rules state that players should not “instruct, permit, cause or enable” any one to place a bet on the “result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of, or occurrence in, a football match or competition.”
The governing body is now looking into the incident.
A spokesman said: “We are investigating to establish whether there has been any breach of The FA rules relating to betting.”
Richard Watson, Gambling Commission enforcement and intelligence director said:
” Integrity in sport is not a joke and we have opened an investigation to establish exactly what happened. As part of that we’ll be looking into any irregularity in the betting market and establishing whether the operator has met its licence requirement to conduct its business with integrity.”
Sutton manager Paul Doswell had already expressed his disappointment with Shaw’s behaviour.
“I think Wayne has become this global superstar on the back of being 23 stone. He’s made that a chance to make some more media coverage off the back of it,” he said. “The reality is I don’t know [if Shaw did it for a bet] but it wouldn’t surprise me. I don’t think it shows us in the best light.”