The League of Ireland took a body blow this morning with the breaking news that ten individuals across Dublin, Limerick and Cork had been arrested as part of an ongoing Garda investigation into match-fixing.

Some of the players are understood to be former or even current players though the games in question are believed to be from two and three years ago.

The FAI issued a short statement saying that “The Football Association of Ireland notes the latest developments in the Gardai enquiry into alleged match-fixing.”

“The FAI, in conjunction with UEFA, remains committed to a zero-tolerance policy on match-fixing. As this is now a legal matter we will be making no further comment.”

The men were brought to a number of different Garda stations and some of their homes were searched.

They range in age from their 20’s to their 60’s but have not been identified.

They are being detained under section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud. They can be detained for questioning for an initial 24 hours.

The League has seen increased attendance and visibility this season and the timing of the arrests must be a real blow to those who have been making such strides at a local and national level to put the game on a positive trajectory.

Drogheda United became the first Irish club this season to back a UK initiative called the Big Step which seeks to end all gambling advertising and sponsorship within football.

The FAI also made the decision not to seek gambling-related sponsorship for the international teams.

This is clearly a developing story to which we will return.

 

 

Sport for Business Partners