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Match fixing scandal rocks Spanish football
Police in Spain arrested several people Tuesday, after La Liga officials made a complaint dealing with a game from last year.
The match which started this was a May 2018 contest between La Liga 2 sides Huesca and Nàstic. Huesca went into the game knowing it had already been promoted to La Liga, while Nàstic was in fight to avoid relegation. Large bets were placed on Nàstic prior to the match, and the odds at halftime when the score was 0-0 kept getting smaller, until a goal in the 72nd minute ultimately gave Nàstic the win and safety.
A statement released by a La Liga spokesman said:
“Today’s police action follows a complaint filed by La Liga with the Spanish authorities about possible match-fixing in a May 2018 match. We want to thank the national police for the extraordinary work done to dismantle what appears to be an organized criminal group dedicated to obtaining economic benefits through the predetermination of football matches.”
While most of the matches deal were from 2016-17 and 2017-18, there is a game from the last few weeks that is now under suspicion as well.
According to Spanish newspaper Marca, the final day contest between Valencia and Valladolid has come under investigation. Los Che won the match 2-0, and finished in fourth place to guarantee a return to next season's UEFA Champions League.
The match saw some unusual bets placed on it, which triggered an investigation.
One of the players for Valladolid, Borja Fernandez, was one of the players arrested Tuesday.
Valencia, which has strongly denied any part in this investigation, released this statement Tuesday about the claims:
“In response to news reports published this Tuesday regarding the supposed involvement by players and directors of other clubs in illegal gambling and alleged match-fixing, Valencia CF – as an entity completely outside of this matter, wish to publicly warn that we will take the relevant legal action against the spreading of any unfounded rumor or story attempting to link our club to this case.”