West Ham prepare for huge Paqueta decision

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According to The Athletic, West Ham will only be able to sack Lucas Paqueta if he is found guilty in the gambling investigation against him currently and a gross breach of contract as per the FA’s gambling rules.

The Hammers have had a frustrating few months with the failure to qualify for European football ahead of next season due to a ninth-place finish and the latest scandal to hit the East London club with their Brazilian winger being investigated.

It was revealed last week by the FA that Lucas Paqueta is under investigation and has been charged “for the improper purpose of affecting the betting market”.

The FA statement went on to read:

“It’s alleged that he (Paqueta) directly sought to influence the progress, conduct, or any other aspect of, or occurrence in these matches by intentionally seeking to receive a card from the referee for the improper purpose of affecting the betting market in order for one or more persons to profit from betting.”

Indeed, Paqueta was quick to respond to the allegations and vehemently denied any involvement in any wrongdoing over the last nine months, releasing his own statement on the situation via social media:

“I am extremely surprised and upset that the FA has decided to charge me,”

“For nine months, I have cooperated with every step of their investigation and provided all the information I can. I deny the charges in their entirety and will fight with every breath to clear my name.”

The Athletic has now reported to give some clarity to West Ham supporters on where the club stands on being able to part ways with the winger if he was to be found guilty in the coming weeks and months ahead.

According to the popular publication, the Hammers will not be able to sack Paqueta unless he pleads guilty to the accused or is convicted of a crime as a result of his alleged misdemeanours.

Will West Ham sack Lucas Paqueta?

There is no doubt that it would be a huge loss to the club if Paqueta is found guilty of committing a crime or does plead guilty to the allegations presented against him by the FA.

Over 31 Premier League appearances last season, the 26-year-old scored four goals, delivered six assists and created 12 big chances, as well averaging 1.4 key passes, 1.4 shots on goal, 6.3 ball recoveries, 2.3 tackles and 7.6 duels won combined per game, displaying his huge influence in his wider forward role and in the advanced midfield roles he has often been found in too.

Nevertheless, there is a chance that West Ham and Lopetegui will have to plan for a future without the Brazilian as he could be given a lifetime ban for spot fixing if he is found guilty of purposely getting a booking to satisfy a bet.

With that being said, the sooner this huge issue is resolved the sooner the club can plan for a future with or without Paqueta in the squad and potentially replace him over the summer transfer window.

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