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Four-month ban for Townsend

Tottenham winger Andros Townsend has been banned from all football and football activity for four months, three of which are suspended, after breaching betting regulations.

An independent regulatory commission hearing imposed the sanction, which has been backdated to May 23 when he voluntarily withdrew from the England U21 squad.

However, a statement released by the Football Association revealed that three months of the ban have been suspended until July 1 2016.

They will be automatically invoked upon a proven breach of the FA's betting rules during that period.

"Townsend, who was also fined £18,000, was charged for breaches of FA Rule E8(b) for misconduct in relation to betting, which he admitted and requested a personal hearing," read the statement.

With Townsend's ban effectively reduced to one month, the 21-year-old will be available for the start of the 2013/14 Premier League season.

He spent a successful loan spell at QPR, arriving at Loftus Road in January, and while the club were relegated he received frequent praise from manager Harry Redknapp.

Once the FA had charged him with breaching their betting regulations, he pulled out of England's squad for the European U21 Championships in Israel.

Townsend was not accused of betting on matches he had any involvement in, but the FA operates strict rules that forbid gambling on a wide spectrum of games.

A product of the Tottenham academy, he came to prominence at QPR last season with his energetic displays, emerging as one of the few highlights of a disastrous season.

On his Twitter account Townsend said he would not appeal the sanctions.