Two Bulgarian Football Players Charged with Match-fixing

Bulgarian prosecutors have charged two second division players with match-fixing as part of an investigation into alleged corruption in Bulgarian football, the domestic football association (BFU) said, reports Channel News Asia.

The BFU said prosecutors had charged players Lubomir Vitanov and Ivan Topuzov from Bulgarian club Bansko with establishing a criminal organisation, aiming to commit crimes against sport. Prosecutors said the players allegedly manipulated unspecified Bansko games in Bulgaria’s second division during the 2016-2017 season.

Neither Bansko nor the players, who were suspended indefinitely by the BFU, were immediately available for comment when contacted by Reuters.

Soon after the announcement, Bulgarian authorities, including the BFU, were criticized by fans on social media and websites for punishing only smaller clubs.

There have been media reports of widespread match-fixing and corruption in the Balkan country for years, but nobody has been brought to trial and the European Commission has criticized the authorities for doing little to fight the problem.

The first documented manipulated game in the country took place in 1949 when Levski Sofia and city neighbours Akademik drew 1-1 in order to guarantee that CSKA, Levski’s bitter rivals, would be relegated to the second division.

25 January 2019

Disclaimer: All views, opinions and accounts included in the RAI News Section are those of the authors; their inclusion does not imply official endorsement or acceptance by RAI. The News Section reflects the selection of topics of informative value to the organization and its stakeholders. Its content is taken from press/media sources and does not in any way reflect official RAI Secretariat policy. RAI Secretariat is not responsible for possible inaccuracies in media reports.


Bosnia and Herzegovina