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SBD Global/December 11, 2013/International Football
FA Secretary General Alex Horne Says Match-Fixing Not 'Big Issue' In English Game
Published December 11, 2013
A LOT TO LEARN: SKY SPORTS reported Horne has admitted that the game "has a lot to learn from other sports when it comes to combating match-fixing and sport-fixing." Premier League General Secretary Nic Coward, Football League CEO Shaun Harvey, British Horseracing Authority Dir of Integrity, Legal & Risk Adam Brickell and Rugby Football League CEO Nigel Wood "were also at the summit." Horne: "Some of the education programmes put in place by cricket are very far advanced and the integrity unit the BHA have in place is very advanced." Interpol said that football match-fixing "is being investigated in 30 countries across the world, while the Gambling Commission has looked into 30 suspicious betting patterns in the game in the last year" (SKY SPORTS, 12/10).
CALMING FEARS: The PA's Ziegler & Lister reported Horne said after the meeting, "I think the general consensus around the room was this isn't a big issue. The intelligence that we have says this isn't a wide-scale issue at the moment but, again, we don't want to be complacent." The FA "has its own integrity unit and education programmes, but fixing has been an issue for a longer time for horseracing and cricket." Miller said, "There had been a commitment from all the sports to work together. Match-fixing is a real threat to the integrity of sport. If fans don't trust what they see, the integrity of sport will be permanently damaged" (PA, 12/10).
STERN WARNING: In a piece for the London TELEGRAPH, former FIFA Head of Security Chris Eaton wrote, "Sport is now completely international. So is sport betting and so is organised crime, as we have seen in the proliferation of match-fixing scandals across the world." Eaton added, "What is clear is that national police forces cannot compete with globally roaming criminals taking advantage of globally consumed sport which is bet on globally. The time has come for an international approach to the scourge of match-fixing, which I believe is far more insidious and deeply rooted in sport than doping and which has far more potential to damage sport in a very lasting and debilitating way" (TELEGRAPH, 12/9).