‘Pie-Gate’s’ Wayne Shaw Learns His Fate for Face-Stuffing Betting Stunt

Wayne Shaw, the infamous Pie-gate punter, has been fined £375 by the Football Association (FA) and banned from play for two months.

Wayne Shaw fined suspended for piegate

Former Sutton United goalkeeper Wayne Shaw has been fined £375 and told to stay off the field for two months for eating a pie and unduly influencing an online novelty sports bet. (Image: Reuters)

Shaw hit the headlines back in February, when he ate a pie live on TV during Sutton United’s FA Cup fifth round tie against Arsenal. As the cameras caught the former Sutton goalkeeper in the act, it triggered a payout by the online bookmaker Sun Bets.

Prior to the match, the betting site offered odds of 8/1 that the larger-than-life Shaw would consume a pie during the game. With his love of pastry no secret, the bet seemed like just another novelty market gimmick, until Shaw admitted he knew about the offer before the match started.

Sleazy as Pie

Discussing the incident after the fact, Shaw told various media outlets that he bought the pie especially for the match and planned to eat it the moment the cameras focused on him. Shaw’s admission alerted regulators at the FA and the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), both of which went on to investigate potential fraud.

The tubby keeper soon found himself in the middle of a media storm, forced to deny suggestions that he was in cahoots with Sun Bets and part of some form of elaborate marketing stunt. Following an investigation, the FA returned its verdict on August 6.

At the conclusion of the hearing, Shaw was judged to have breached FA Rule E5 (a) which focuses on “integrity matters” relating to matches and competitions.

“A Participant shall not, directly or indirectly, seek to influence for an improper purpose the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of, or occurrence in, a football match or competition,” reads rule E5(a).

In this instance, the betting market was judged to be the “competition” and Shaw’s prior knowledge of the bet was deemed to be a direct influence on the final outcome. For his infraction, Shaw was fined £375 and banned from all football activities for a period of two months.

FA and UKGC Working to Eliminate Betting Issues

Despite the innocent nature of the novelty bet, the incident came at a time when both the FA and UKGC were working hard to stamp out corruption in football. Earlier this year, footballer Joey Barton accepted an FA misconduct charge after he admitted placing more than 1,200 football bets.

Under the FA’s rules, any member of a football club, from players to staff, aren’t allowed to bet on football. The idea behind the rule is that a culture of football insiders betting on matches could unfairly influence results (something which has already occurred in Italy).

Based on this, the FA and the UKGC have been working to uncover instances of malpractice linked to football and betting. Shaw’s actions may not have directly lined his own pocket, but it was judged to have jeopardised the integrity of the game and, therefore, was cause for a fine and suspension.

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