Tuesday 22 January 2019

Medeiros: European club run by 'criminals'

A professional football club in Europe is being run by criminals, the former chief executive of the European Professional Football Leagues has alleged.

Emanuel Medeiros made the claim as he spoke on Wednesday at the Soccerex Global Convention in Manchester, then expanded on it after the debate, but would not name a specific club he was referring to.

"I believe there is a professional club in a professional league in Europe that is being run by criminals. I have reasons to believe that has been the case," Medeiros told Sky Sports News.

"I would not mention any club or any country because there are proper ways of dealing with this and, with due respect for press, it's not in this forum things will be done. We have been in touch with relevant authorities raising warnings. I'm aware of an ongoing police investigation into that club, but I cannot go into details."

Talking on stage as part of a debate about match-fixing in the game, Medeiros - recently appointed as chief executive of the International Centre for Sport Security's European head office - said: "Match-fixing has evolved.

"It is getting more refined, more sophisticated. It is not just bribing, or threatening or even using more persuasive coercion means.

"Illegal match-fixing syndicates are using front companies to take over clubs in Europe. It is important that we realise that.

"There are reasons to be seriously concerned. It is a wake-up call. We need a concerted, global response, a serious response."

John Abbott, chairman of the Interpol Steering Group for the Interpol-FIFA initiative to reduce corruption in football, also took part in the debate but refused to comment on possible ongoing investigations.

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