Match fixing probe extended to two more games
TWO more Athlone Town FC games are to be investigated following suspicions of irregular betting and match-fixing .
The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has confirmed the games, both of which took place this season, will be examined. Three of the club’s recent fixtures, including the 3-1 defeat to Longford last Saturday, have now been put under the spotlight.
While the other games to be reviewed have not been specified, an Athlone defeat to UCD in April has been described as a “carbon-copy” of the loss to Longford Town by one industry insider. “
The FAI has since learned – via confidential information received on Friday, May 5 – that two other games involving the club warrant further investigation,” a statement from the association said.
“The FAI has contacted the club about this new information and will commence its investigation on Monday, May 8, when meeting with players, staff and officials.”
Athlone, one of the oldest clubs in Ireland, have said they are “shocked” by the FAI investigation into suspicious wagering on the Longford game.
The FAI said on Wednesday that the biggest movements in betting took place on Asian markets.
Betting industry personnel are said to be perplexed that authorities have not looked at betting on the April 9 game against UCD, which Athlone lost 4-1.
UEFA’s report into the Longford match suggested the evidence of wrongdoing is conclusive.
It highlighted anomalous activity relating to late goals being scored in both halves defying logic in terms of the levels of confidence of those betting.
UCD’s last goal came after 89 minutes in the game played in Belfield.
“Outside of the activity that has been flagged up publicly now on the fixture last weekend, the UCD league game virtually mirrored the betting activity, with hugely significant volumes of money being placed in the Asian betting markets in the final 10 minutes of the match,” a betting industry source said.
“This money, and the direction the market took, heavily suggested that another goal would occur in the game for UCD in the closing minutes.”
Betting “in game” has become popular globally.