Football

Antonino Pulvirenti admits to match fixing

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Just when you thought Italian football couldn't lose more credibility, another match fixing scandal rocks the country.

Antonino Pulvirenti, president of Catania, is at the centre of a match fixing probe as prosecutors claim he paid £71,000 to effect the outcome of five matches to save his club Catania from relegation.

Pulverenti was arrested along with six other men on charges of committing "fraud in sporting competition".

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Prosecutors claim that Pulverenti admitted that he paid for five matches to be fixed last season.

The club released a statement on their website stating Pulvirenti had "contacts with other parties" to try to save the club from relegation, but with no "real effect on the outcome".

Catania's public prosecutor Giovanni Salvi said: "At least five games, maybe six, were fixed and sums of money given to players.

Serie B president Andrea Abodi said: "My first reaction is one of great pain because we work hard every day to make sure the league is credible and to help our reputation grow.

"It has left a very bitter taste."

Italian football is no stranger to corruption. In 2006, Juventus, Lazio and Fiorentina were relegated to the Serie B for their involvement in match-fixing.

Juventus were also stripped of the league titles they won in 2005 and 2006 and deducted 30 points with other clubs clubs receiving fines.

These latest arrests only serve to remind the public that match fixing is still rampant in Italy.

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Topics:
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Serie A

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