’Sometimes we fixed more games than we could bet’

In an exclusive interview with Play the Game, a former match-fixer tells how effectively criminal syndicates are still manipulating sports results despite all initiatives against it. The whole approach against match-fixing could be wrong, Declan Hill reports.  This was first printed at: https://www.playthegame.org/news/news-articles/2019/0584_sometimes-we-fixed-more-games-than-we-could-bet/ ** The knock came late at night. Marko Stanovic – whose name has been changed to help protect him from the mob – was in one of the world’s great match-fixing gangs. A group whose criminal ties stretched deep...

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Beauty, Chaos and Tales of Match-Fixing at the Africa Cup of Nations

For those who have not been following the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON 2019), it has been a classic example of the beauty and chaos of Africa’s football world. “In French football you know that 10% of the money will disappear, in African football it is 90%” Joseph Antoine Bell, ex-Cameroon, Olympique de Marseille and Girondins de Bordeaux goalkeeper. Beauty in the extraordinary talent and athleticism of the players. Given their abilities and the capacity of many of the indigenous coaches (try...

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Why the Match Fixers are at the World Cup in Russia

The hot tub of World Cup match-fixing This article first appeared on playthegame.org Potential corruption and match-fixing at the World Cup is aided by corrupt national football association officials, . FIFA’s ‘often odd’ attitude towards these officials protects the fixers at the World Cup. Uncle Frankie, the match-fixer, sat in the hot tub with players from the Swedish World Cup team. It was in a Los Angeles Hotel before their third-place match with Bulgaria at the 1994 World Cup. Uncle Frankie offered the...

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Mafia Threats and the To Do List for European Football

He is one of the most powerful men in world football. Yet another goal in the Eldnese 12-0 loss to Barcelona B We met at the offices of a very prominent European Football Association.  He was there with a colleague. I was there to speak to them about match-fixing.  The officials were interested, purportedly, in better protecting their sport.   However, when his colleague, briefly, left the room.    The official leaned forward and said deliberately, “Listen, if you fuck us over I have...

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2 Farces, Turkish Nightmare & Infantino’s Blatter-Lite FIFA

It was not a good week for sport. The Turkish nightmare continues. There are strange doings, as usual, in Singapore and Qatar. However, the big story is that Gianni Infantino's FIFA has now become a Blatter-Lite FIFA: the same organisation, only with better table manners for the media.   The key issue is the resignation of Domenico Scala as the Head of the Audit and Compliance Committee. He quit FIFA as Infantino pushed through a measure that would have allowed the FIFA Executive Committee...

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Games Night at Zurich Hotels & Why Dan Tan Should Be Released

Crikey – the arrests of FIFA executives is getting so routine at the five-star Hotel Baur au Lac in Zurich the management should build it into their daily schedule: 5 p.m.     -                   High Tea 6 p.m.    -                   Cocktails & Happy Hour 6 a.m.    -                    FBI & Swiss Organized Crime Police arrests of FIFA executives 7.15 a.m.   -                Continental breakfast Possibly the hotel has, like chocolates on the pillows, turn-down service and concierges, criminal lawyers standing around...

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Singapore’s Middle Finger to the Sporting World

Well this is interesting. Dan Tan the man Interpol once described him as the “the mastermind and leader of the world’s most notorious match-fixing syndicate” has been  released from jail by a Singapore Appeal’s Court judge. Three technically accurate points and a chronology: 1)    It is technically true, the appeal judge’s assessment is accurate: there is no available evidence that Tan ever fixed a match in Singapore. 2)    It is technically true that Interpol described Tan, after he was arrested, as “the mastermind...

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Requiem for a Fixer

  He was one of the best. Yet in the end, he was brought down in a futile attempt to fix a little team in a forgettable tournament. For those readers who do not follow the intricacies of the Singaporean legal system, you may have missed the story this week, that one was imprisoned for four years for match-fixing. The actual case involved Pal bribing the coach of the East Timor national team and some of his players with 15,000$ How Pal...

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Murdered Bikers, IOC/FIFA and Dead Men Walking

The links between organized crime bike gangs and the IOC/FIFA Okay, everyone calm down. This blog is not about Thomas Bach’s previously unknown (and utterly fictional) history as a Hells Angels member or Sepp Blatter’s non-role as a Bandido drug enforcer. Rather it is about the reason why those nine motorcycle gang members were murdered in Waco, Texas and how it is linked to a key issue around international sports organizations. Brand protection. The superficial reason for the killings last weekend was...

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