Games of doubts

More suspicious betting on friendlies, more fixed games and more outrage this winter amongst the clubs affected but still no sign of football’s governing bodies taking any serious action.

By Steve Menary

There was suspicious betting on 42 friendlies this winter involving 77 different European clubs from 19 different European countries, plus Iran and Kyrgyzstan, according to research by Josimar and experienced betting analyst Ivo Romano. Clubs may not be always involved as corrupt officials are a major problem with friendlies, but five clubs were involved in two friendlies showing suspicious betting and one team played in three games.

Ivo Romano said: "I think international federations must care about fixing in club friendlies despite these matches not officially being under their jurisdiction. I think the same for law enforcement agencies as Interpol and UNODC [United Nations Office on Drugs & Crime]. If match fixing is a crime they must care.”

Signs of suspicious betting, such as a large amount of money on goals that subsequently materialise, does not mean that these matches were definitely manipulated, but does warrant further investigation. Unfortunately, this rarely occurs and even when national associations do take action the cross-border nature of the games with clubs from different countries playing games in a third neutral location leads to conflict over jurisdiction and means little is ever done abo...

You must be a subscriber to read this article

Josimar is entirely dependent on our subscribers to tell the stories from football that matter. Become a subscriber today!

Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.