Friday, 13 December 2013

How To Solve Match Fixing Once And For All

Yesterday, Liberal Democrat MP Sir Bob Russell said that English professional football is "rotten to the core" and that a Royal Commission is required to clean up football with "parasitic agents" being the major problem.

If any such Royal Commission is to work then it will need to thoroughly address the six points outlined below.
Otherwise the game is up.
Also yesterday, UEFA announced that they are drafting an 11-point plan aimed to eradicate match-fixing, labelling it their 'top priority'.

Unfortunately, skimming over the pitch put forward by the aptly named UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino, we can only expect peripheral tinkering akin to that achieved by the British government's select committee who reported last summer.

On Tuesday night, there was a highly suspicious match between FC Bayern and Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League ( (

We may be polemical but there is evidently a case to be answered here.
This is a suspicious event between the Champions League holders and the richest club in the world!
And media silence.

Instead UEFA claim only 0.7% of matches are fixed and the mainstream media in Britain focuses on Whitehawk FC and DJ Campbell.

Infantino also indicated that UEFA want to strengthen the links between sports authorities and state bodies but this is a structure that can backfire dependent on who represents the state - there are many countries where state interference would only serve to increase the corruption.

We are employed by clubs as leech consultants.
We protect clubs against systemic and particular corruptions against their interests.
We analyse the zeitgeist of corruption.

To us, the most astonishing aspect of the match fixing 'crisis' is that when we have seen that government, the mainstream media, investment banking, the police, retail banks, the utilities, many other sports are all corrupted, there is this religious belief that, somehow, top level football is not tainted.
Football has taken over from religion - everybody is 'Something FC 'til I Die'.
And we don't want our New Deity to be killed off just yet.

But if football really wants to save itself from the neohyperrealities of the present systemic corruptions, it needs to implement every single one of the points below in their entirety.

No pseudo-11 point plan but an overhaul of an entirely corrupt mechanism from top to bottom.
But starting at the top.

DJ Campbell Is Innocent!

1. The Betting Markets and Insider Trading

The primary concern are the global betting markets.
There are three levels of market activity - the public markets, the Dark Pools and the illegal underground markets based largely but not exclusively in South East Asia.

With a global network of this type, there has to be global regulation with jail sentences and life bans for miscreants.
The global betting market turnover on football is thought to have reached £1 trillion.
£1 trillion is over 50% of the Britain's annual GDP!!

All markets must be public.
All trading by insiders must be registered with a Commitment of Traders body to prevent inside knowledge being exploited.
All players, referees, agents, managers should be banned from betting entirely.
All suspicious betting must be reported to forensic analysts to detect fraudulent behaviour - the current level of expertise exhibited by Early Warning, Interpol/ Europol etc is not professional enough (we are able to detect insider betting and match fixing in many more games than 0.7%!!).
All spot-markets should be banned.
All Dark Pool activity must be regulated and made public, the same with the Asian underground and the developing undergrounds in Dubai, the Caribbean, numerous British offshore territories, Moscow, Tel Aviv, Tbilisi, Nigeria, Australia, the US and Canada, Brazil, Mumbai etc.

2. Agents and the Markets

Every single football agent that I have ever met has been criminalised!

Agents are a lubricant in the game and, in addition to leeching money from the sport, they facilitate corruptions relating to both the betting markets and the transfer markets.

Ownership of goalkeepers, linkage with referees (see below), multiple ownership of players in a game, even more extensive multiple ownership via linkage with other agents in a fragmented cartel of illicit match fixing and betting market activity.
Accordingly agents not only distort, corrupt and profit from the betting markets that they exploit, they degenerate the sport and impact upon trophies being won and relegations/ promotions etc.
The careers of players are also affected by these corruptions and the fan is forced to watch events where the outcome is clearly visible in underground betting markets pre-match!

Agents corrupt Champions League games at the highest level and yet UEFA do nothing.

Agents also, as is their wont, exploit the transfer market via 3rd party ownership.

There is no regulation for agents.
And no regulation or self-regulation is pointless.
Agents distort every single aspect of the sport and often utilise business practices that border on the slave trade when it comes to footballers from Africa and certain South and Central American countries.
Coercion of players relating to the betting markets is a major issue.
Additionally, under the table payments are the norm and ownership networks are structured similarly to the Tor proxy server concept!

Agents must be regulated.

3. Club Owners

Surely it is asking for trouble if club owners double as bookmakers.

There will inevitably be occasions when the financial self-interest of Mr Bet 365 The Bookmaker will trump the interests of Mr Bet 365 The Football Club (Stoke City) - the only issue is whether such self-interest is implemented.
Additionally, this incentive to fix can result in club owners stopping their own teams from winning to the absolute detriment of the fans who are paying the wages and the integrity of the game.

All club ownership should be open rather than underground and opaque.
Fit and proper persons rulings should be robust and thoroughly implemented - the Championship in England is a veritable Hotch Potch of Inappropriates when it comes to club ownership...
... and the Premier League is only marginally better.

4. Referees

Referees are an issue.
Relatively underpaid in a millionaire's paradise, they are ripe for corruption.

Referees are chosen from too small a pool (only 18 for the Premier League - the most liquid betting market on the planet, for example) and have very long careers.
Market ownership of a referee is a big earner for both parties.
Referees are additionally 'owned' by other participants in the game - clubs, mafia, even UEFA chooses referees relating to its own annual marketing plan AND the importance of allegiance to the G14(18) power base of clubs.

If referees were selected meritocratically then corruption from this source would be harder to implement.
To this end, the ratings of referees need to be made public and the implementation of video technology (see next point) will enable 'under-achievers' to be rooted out and discarded.

5. Video Technology

It is more critical for football to have video technology than cricket, tennis or rugby yet the authorities refuse to introduce anything more than goalline technology. Why?

An incorrect wicket in cricket, line call in tennis or try in rugby is rarely match changing yet those sports guard against such occurrences by using technology ...
... in football a goal or a penalty or a sending off very frequently is a match changing event and yet we have virtually nothing.

Up to 40 wickets in a Test Match, 240 points in a tennis match, half a dozen tries in a game of rugby...
... and one goal.

Furthermore, because professional footballers are well aware of the corruptions taking place, once a referee signals his intent, there is a psychological deflation in the victim team.

The most striking aspect of watching cricket or rugby is how fan conversation always relates to the game itself due to the utilisation of video technology for virtually all contentious decisions.
This serves to produce the correct result, massively reduce corruption and act as a measurement of performance of referees and umpires.

The argument that it would slow down the game is fatuous.

It would add excitement if marketed correctly.
UEFA and the Premier League would be able to bombard us with messages from their media partners while we waited to see if it is a penalty or not!

6. Whistleblowing Hotline

When we have meetings with administrative bodies, chief executives, football managers, club owners, analysts, bookmakers, many fans, there is acceptance that football is corrupt but that nobody is going to do anything about it due to both financial self-interest and fear.

Remember Mike Newell? He soon disappeared from the game!

A global whistleblowing hotline needs to be set up to allow knowledge of match fixing to be made available to the various bodies that will need to be established for Points 1-5 to be achieved.
This must be anonymous and rewarded.

People like ourselves who receive threats and menaces due to their efforts to expose football that is "riddled with corruption" need to be protected.

The sport is flooded with mafiosi interests - at the moment, I am enjoying extensive conversations with a contact over the role of Serbian mafia in Italian and Serbian football and the role of Albanian mafia in the Austrian game.

But such groups are only able to exploit the integrity of football due to an entire lack of regulation in many areas and loopholes elsewhere.
If FIFA and UEFA eliminated these distortions, we could have betting markets on a level playing field and football would not be fixed. 

We are taking serious existential risks to disclose these neohyperrealities of modern football.



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