'Right decision' for FA to suspend Tonali ban - Howe

Sandro Tonali and Eddie Howe

Newcastle manager Eddie Howe says he welcomes the Football Association's decision to suspend Sandro Tonali's two-month ban.

Tonali, 23, will return to playing at the end of August, if he does not commit further betting breaches before the end of next season.

The Italy midfielder is already serving a 10-month ban running until August for offences during his time in Italy.

"It was the right decision, I think, that the FA arrived at - that his ban is not extended," said Howe.

Tonali took a voluntary pay cut after his original ban was imposed.

"It was something he wanted to do, he felt the guilt... to show the club in good faith that he was sorry," added Howe.

"He was determined to put it behind him and try to learn from it."

Tonali was charged by the FA in March and admitted placing between 40 and 50 football bets after joining Newcastle from AC Milan last July, including four on the Magpies' results.

Howe said Tonali deserved credit for admitting "he had issues and needed help".

"I see a small fraction of his life time on the training ground. He has been a good professional and trained very well," added Howe.

"I am sure he has had some difficult times, but he has conducted himself in a positive way."

After playing in the Champions League this season they have failed to qualify for Europe's elite club competition for the 2025-25 campaign.

Howe said Tonali would have been a "big player" for the Magpies and "driven" the team to get "key results" if he had been available.

"It's been a huge frustration to have a top quality player that you can't use," he added.

"I know what he can do and the difference he'll have made this year, but it wasn't to be."