Burnley midfielder Joey Barton has been banned from football for 18 months after admitting a Football Association charge in relation to betting.
The 34-year-old has been fined £30,000 and warned about his future conduct after being charged with breaking FA rules for placing 1,260 bets on matches between 26 March 2006 and 13 May 2016.
Barton said he was addicted to gambling.
He plans to appeal against the length of the suspension, calling it "excessive".
"I have fought addiction to gambling and provided the FA with a medical report about my problem – I'm disappointed it wasn't taken into proper consideration," the BBC quotes the controversial star as saying.
The midfielder bet on some matches in which he played but he stressed in a statement on his website that "this is not match fixing" and that at "no point in any of this is my integrity in question".
He added: "I accept that I broke the rules governing professional footballers, but I do feel the penalty is heavier than it might be for other less controversial players.
"The decision effectively forces me into an early retirement."
He added: "If the FA is truly serious about tackling the culture of gambling in football, it needs to look at its own dependence on the gambling companies, their role in football and in sports broadcasting, rather than just blaming the players who place a bet."
Players in England's top eight tiers are banned from betting on football.
The former Manchester City and Newcastle player rejoined Burnley in January, having left Scottish Premiership side Rangers in November.Fastest Paying Betting Site in Nigeria: Grab your 140% First Time Deposit Bonus Now — www.Sportybet.Com Copyright © 2021 Completesports.com All rights reserved. The information contained in Completesports.com may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the prior written authority of Completesports.com.