Paul Pogba could face ban of up to four years after failing drug test in Italy


Paul Pogba could be banned from football for up to four years after testing positive for testosterone.

The Juventus midfielder has been provisionally suspended following a random drugs test taken after his club’s 3-0 win at Udinese on 20 August, Italy’s national anti-doping tribunal (NADO Italia) announced on Monday.

The test revealed elevated levels of testosterone, a hormone that can increase an athletes’ endurance, meaning the 30-year-old’s second sample will also need to be examined. Pogba has three days to produce a counter-analysis of the result, according to reports in Italy. If found guilty of doping, the France international could be suspended for between two and four years.

“In acceptance of the instance proposed by the National Anti-doping Prosecutor, it has provided for the provisional suspension of the athlete Paul Labile Pogba,” NADO Italia said in a statement. The tribunal said Pogba had violated anti-doping rules when they found the prohibited substance “non-endogenous testosterone metabolites”, adding that the results were “consistent with the exogenous origin of the target compounds”.

He was also dropped from a Juventus squad for disciplinary reasons and claimed to have almost quit the game after allegedly being blackmailed by an organised crime gang. The midfielder has not started a game this season but has made two substitute appearances, last appearing in Juventus’ 2-0 win at Empoli on 3 September.

The Italian club have not commented so far on the latest controversy surrounding Pogba.