Football: UEFA opens match-fixing probe


European football’s governing body UEFA said Monday it has opened match-fixing investigations into Turkish side Besiktas while Romanian champions Steaua Bucharest could face expulsion from the Champions League over a previous matchfixing offence.

Steaua’s president Gigi Becali, who was already serving a prison sentence for corruption, was condemned to another three years of incarceration last week for having offered bribes to players from a rival team, Universitatea Cluj in 2008.

Under the criteria with regard to being eligible for the Champions League UEFA can bar any club that has either been directly or indirectly involved in matchfixing.

However, UEFA has not divulged the exact nature of the charges laid against either Steaua or Besiktas.

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Two Besiktas officials are under investigation relating to the 2011 Turkish Cup final, which the club won on penalties against Istanbul B.B.

The two cases are due to be heard by the UEFA disciplinary commission on Friday June 21 in Nyon.

The next day the disciplinary commission will hear the case of another Istanbul based club, last season’s Europa League semi-finalists Fenerbahce who, along with five of their officials, are suspected of fixing matches as well.

UEFA will pronounce judgement on all three cases on June 24.

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