match fixing probe

UEFA to charge club with match fixing within days

March 25, 2009

UEFA will bring match fixing charges against a European club within days, European soccer's governing body said on Wednesday.

"There are number of cases we have been looking at," UEFA general secretary David Taylor told a news conference after the UEFA Congress. "It's very complex and very difficult to find proof. But within the next couple of days we will be issuing charges against one club."

Taylor did not disclose what country the club was from. In September UEFA said it was reviewing 10 matches from the current UEFA Cup season and 15 from last season for irregular betting patterns, all in the competition's preliminary rounds.

UEFA will launch a gambling investigating unit next season featuring experts who will review suspected irregularities in matches from European competitions.

"UEFA is setting up this betting fraud detection system across Europe to include 27,000 matches in the first and second division in each national association," Taylor said. "Only a few matches cause us problems but we are determined to root out this problem."

UEFA president Michel Platini called match fixing "a serious risk to football."

"Through this early warning system we will find out what bets are being placed," Platini said. "I'll be extremely firm with those who cheat. I don't accept players who cheat and will suspend them from any activity in football."

Meanwhile, Geoff Thompson, the former Football Association chairman, has been re-elected as a UEFA vice-president.

Thompson received strong support at UEFA's Congress in Europe, winning 43 out of a possible 53 votes.

But Peter Rees, president of the Football Association of Wales, failed in his attempt to get elected to UEFA's executive committee. Rees polled just 11 votes, needing 22 to get in.