CONCACAF issues statement regarding Gold Cup match-fixing attempt

CONCACAFGoldCupLogo (CONCACAF)

By IVES GALARCEP

Just two days after a pair of Belize National Team players came forward to reveal a plot to bribe them to throw Belize’s Gold Cup opener vs. the U.S. Men’s National Team, CONCACAF has stepped forward to reveal the latest on their investigation into the matter.

CONCACAF released the following statement, which, among other things, reveals that CONCACAF has identified the person accused of attempted to bribe Belize players into throwing the USA match:

CONCACAF was notified of an attempt to bribe Belize national team players Woodrow West and Ian Gaynair on July 7th, two days ahead of their Group A, Gold Cup match against the United States that took place in Portland, OR.
 
Both players directly approached confederation officials immediately after the incident took place to report the attempted offense. 
 
Following the report by the players, CONCACAF launched a full investigation alongside FIFA.


Initial findings of this investigation have resulted in a positive identification of the individual attempting the bribery. 
 
We want to thank Woodrow West and Ian Gaynair and recognize them for their bravery and commitment to preserving the integrity of our game. 
 
The fight against match-manipulation is a top priority for CONCACAF.  In alignment with FIFA guidelines and with the help of outside entities such as INTERPOL, we have taken all necessary measures to ensure the legitimacy of each game played throughout the 2013 Gold Cup.  In the past months, CONCACAF, FIFA and INTERPOL have conducted three separate seminars with all Member Associations in the region that have focused on educating, identifying and preventing match manipulation.
 
We are precluded from commenting any further on this matter, due to the ongoing status of the investigation.

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This entry was posted in CONCACAF, CONCACAF Gold Cup, Featured, U.S. Men's National Team. Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to CONCACAF issues statement regarding Gold Cup match-fixing attempt

  1. jmadsen says:

    We can only try to imagine a score if they had thrown the game…

    Seriously, though – well done, you two!

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  3. Big Chil says:

    World’s dumbest bettor. Seriously, he’s afraid to bet against Belize unless the match is fixed?

    • Zach says:

      It wasn’t that. It was in-game betting. He wanted the players to give up a goal at a specific time of the match so he and his associates could score big time

  4. Raymon says:

    Of course, the individual briber is a mere pawn in a vast international network, ending in who-knows-where. It’s a game of whack-a-mole.

    But kudos to the Belizean players, for turning their backs on money that would surely have meant a lot to them.

  5. Travis says:

    Good on them to report this immediately

  6. SBI TroII says:

    Here’s a American salute for Woodrow West and Ian Gaynair.

  7. Paul R says:

    This might sound cynical, but does anyone else think other players may have been approached and less reluctant to accept?

    As people have mentioned it’s not about winning and losing but how many goals and when they were scored. 10k in Euros to amateur players… Considering the final score…

    I thought the Guatemala game was very suspicious a well.

    • Paul Miller says:

      That’s the problem – suspicion. People start going back and watching replays, looking for defenders intentionally out of position, etc. It stinks. By the way, makes you wonder about Belize’s goal a bit, because it was odd that guy was so wide open in his attacking third.

    • Paul Miller says:

      Oh man, just looked at a replay of Wondo’s first goal with this thought in mind. Maybe it’s the power of suggestion, but it sure seems like a couple of Belize’s defenders wanted to give up that goal. First a RB allows Torres to beat him with a pretty lame move, and the kicker is this defender seemingly takes a dive when trying to recover. So Torres is open to loft a short one in front of goal, which results in the soft header to a CB on the goal line, who simultaneously hands the ball to Wondo and sits down.

    • Paul Miller says:

      And then Wondo’s second – he’s camped out right in front of goal, and the nearest player to him was also wearing red and white stripes. Where was either CB? …when they were bunkering in the face of that kind of possession advantage? And the CB’s get surprised because a ball already in their attacking third is fed in toward goal?

      • Casey says:

        Yeah marking by a bunch of amateurs. Oh wait they are. Did you see Mertesacker (plays for Arsenal if you didn’t know) lose Jozy or the two centerbacks for Jamaica lose Jozy cuz you know that never happens.

        • Paul Miller says:

          Look at the replay of those first two goals. On the second, one centerback was adjacent to the attacking Americans. When the ball was played in, that defender moved. He didn’t move to close the lateral gap – he only moved in pace with Wondo in what looks like an attempt to keep him onsides.

          Again, this was a bunkered team with the ball constantly in their defending third – and two U.S. attackers were left unguarded in front of goal.

          • casey says:

            Look at the replay of the belize goal. Parkhurst and Goodson must have been told to leave their men be so Belize could score. Take off your tin foil hat man.

            • Paul Miller says:

              Did you ever see a defender do that? (I mean above the U9 level, when kids are still afraid of lofted crosses.)

              I was a keeper, and if I saw that I would have been too dumbfounded to even yell at the defender after the fact. Several steps back toward goal, keeping pace with the attacker; not even a half-step trying to close the lateral gap.

              • casey says:

                I see it in my amateur league all the time. Like i said look at belizes goal and give it a rest. Your argument isnt valid when there was bad defending on both sides.

              • Paul Miller says:

                Bad defending on both sides has nothing to do with the validity or invalidity of the observation. A lot of football betting is on goals scored within specified 15-minute game windows, or results after a certain point from kickoff (like second half score), etc. It’s about money more so than trying to influence tournament results.

    • petedx says:

      Chill man Belize is a team comprised largely of Police officers, literally that is their job, not professional soccer player. This is not the infowars message board.

      • Michael F. SBI Mafia Original says:

        it’s really not about criminals. US has a law that if any Canadian has a DUI they can’t come into the US. Not sure everyone with a DUI is a “criminal”.

        • Mig says:

          Interestingly, I am pretty sure Canada has that law for US drivers with a DUI. They did a few years ago at least as I remember a friend stranded at Canadian immigration while his friends continued on to a baseball game.

          Cheers!

        • petedx says:

          I didn’t mean they were police officers in the criminal sense, or that that would somehow put them above taking a bribe, I meant that they are not professional athletes which explains the ease with which those goals were scored, not some nefarious plans.

  8. ex_sweeper says:

    The refusal to take bribes is a feel-good story, and I really hope they get some reward (maybe a win against Cuba?) for it. At a minimum, I hope the fundraiser on their FA website makes enough money to cover their costs of participating, and then some. The refusal by the U.S. Immigration Service to let a Belize team official and one of their players into the country based on some past transgressions is not a feel-good story, and should get more investigative coverage.

    • DC says:

      Yeah its probably a bad thing the Immigration Service is doing their job and not letting criminals into the country.

  9. blokhin says:

    so after being turned down by Belize players what did Jack Warner end up betting on?

  10. Paul Miller says:

    This might be the tip of the iceberg. Last fall I read an article in which the journalist – forget who, but easily googled – traveled to Singapore and was told the Gold Cup would be fixed. According to that article, it was every match except the finals (apparently that’s the limit of honor among thieves). This guy in Singapore said players from every team were in the bag. Every team… let that sink in for a minute.

    • Paul Miller says:

      My guess is it will continue until FIFA takes an absolutely no tolerance approach, like baseball did in response to the Black Sox. Lifetime bans, and wiping clean of records. The guy from Italy who admitted guilt last fall only got like 12 months or something. It’s just not a serious punishment for allowing gamblers to control games.

      • whoop-whoop says:

        I agree wholeheartedly.

        Seeing as how the integrity/validity of the matches being played is literally the foundation the game and it’s massive industry/economics lay upon, I am always taken aback at the cavalier attitude FIFA seems to have toward match fixing and the relationship it has with gambling. For example, I find it pretty unbelievable there are sponsorship deals with money accepted from online gambling interests to boldly display their logos front and center on BPL uniforms.

    • petedx says:

      While I’m sure players, officials, and coaches have and will work to fix games, the word of a guy in singapore should probably not be taken as gospel. Especially considering those who fix games usually like to keep this fact hidden.

      • Paul Miller says:

        That guy was associated with the gambling industry there, and that was one of the points the reporter made – FIFA is so soft on match-fixing, the gamblers aren’t even trying to hide it.

    • jhp says:

      I really want to know. Was the Us Gold cup squad picked last fall at the time of this mentioned article?

      • Paul Miller says:

        No, but anyone could guess well over half of the roster we now have. You may not have been able to see Donovan as a B-teamer (either have assumed he’d be on the qualifier roster or retired from international play), but there aren’t a whole lot of other surprises.

      • petedx says:

        Yeah, it was picked by the rand corporation in conjunction with the saucer people

  11. Ilya says:

    Oh, mighty Belize! The king of soccer!

  12. j says:

    You just never know the connections people have to various teams!

  13. todd says:

    they should also look into the Mexico-Canada game. That PK given to Mexico was a sham!