Tensions in Toulouse dressing room over Rasmus Nicolaisen gambling debts

The last few weeks have seen Toulouse’s Coupe de France win quickly give way to a somewhat tumultuous end of the campaign for the promoted side, with several off-pitch controversies dominating the headlines.

After several players refused to take part in the league-wide anti-homophobia campaign and Zakaria Aboukhlal was accused of making sexist comments towards an elected official, Danish centre-back Rasmus Nicolaisen is now in the eye of the storm over a reported gambling issue that has divided the dressing room.

According to L’Équipe, as first reported on by Les Violets, Nicolaisen has borrowed money from at least six teammates and members of staff to cover online gambling debts, with the total sum reaching €100,000.

January arrival Gabriel Suazo is said to have refused to help the centre-back, and in mid-April captain Brecht Dejaegere and midfielder Branco Van den Boomen had made club president Damien Comolli aware of the dressing room’s frustration. Reportedly, certain players were prepared to refuse playing until the situation was solved. It was then decided that Nicolaisen would sit out the match against Lyon on April 14, with manager Philippe Montanier telling the media that his absence was down to hamstring pains.

Comolli then decided, according to L’Équipe, to pay Nicolaisen’s salary in advance to allow him to reimburse his teammates, including the sum of €50,000 to Ado Onaiwu. Neither the club nor the defender’s entourage have responded to L’Équipe on the situation, while the situation is now considered to be resolved in any case – with the 26-year-old playing three of the last four games since the incident came to a head. He had previously been fined by the FA during a loan spell at Portsmouth for placing 53 bets.

GFFN | Raphaël Jucobin

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