The international break has not been a good one for Newcastle United’s Sandro Tonali, or his Italy teammates Nicolo Fagioli and Aston Villa’s Nicolo Zaniolo.

All three have been caught in a huge betting scandal, which goes beyond the punishments the three players may receive. The Italian media have repeatedly said that whilst it’s the Newcastle, Juventus and Aston Villa players taking the headlines, the authorities are more interested in potential criminal gangs behind the betting sites.

Tonali and Fagioli have opted to throw their hands up and admit everything, in the hope of shorter bans. Meanwhile, Zaniolo has insisted he never bet on sports, only card games, and therefore the Aston Villa player is standing his ground.

Wednesday’s edition of Gazzetta dello Sport talked of a potential one year ban for the Newcastle United player, given it’s stated he bet on AC Milan matches.

That would typically bring a three year ban as a base rule, but Tonali will get less because he’s cooperating. There’s been hints at more serious sanctions but they feel like dramatic rumours for now.

Radio Rossonera have spoken to lawyer Emiliano Cardenà from La Scala associates. He’s described as an expert in sport law and answered several questions.

One was whether Newcastle United could somehow renege on the Tonali transfer. Whether there’s any legal basis for the agreements, and obviously the money, to be at risk from a Milan perspective.

To that, he replied: “In my opinion, the only risk that could arise is if Newcastle were to demonstrate that Milan was aware of such a fact and had omitted, in the sale, to inform the other party. The relationship with Milan is resolved today, and that of the Rossoneri with Newcastle is an indirect relationship, but I repeat that for me the only way is to demonstrate knowledge of the event and that they did not prevent it.”

Therefore, he believes if AC Milan knew what was going on and didn’t try to prevent it, and didn’t inform Newcastle United, then there may be the basis for a legal challenge.

That would surely only become a consideration if a lengthy ban is confirmed for Tonali.