International

French league to investigate possible fix that failed

2019-04-16 21:33
Money match-fixing (File)

Paris - The French league (LFP) confirmed on Tuesday that it has opened an investigation into a match between Caen and Angers after a complaint from a third club, Guingamp.

Caen and Guingamp started the weekend tied at the bottom of the table, two points away from escaping automatic relegation and moving into a playoff spot.

At midday on Saturday, before Caen played mid-table Angers, Guingamp president Bertrand Desplat phoned LFP president Didier Quillot to say the club's players had heard rumours about that game.

That evening, Angers won 1-0. Caen lost ground over the weekend, despite the alleged fix, because Guingamp drew 3-3 at Strasbourg and the two teams above them, Dijon and Monaco, also drew.

Even so, the LFP is looking into the allegation.

"The disciplinary committee was automatically convened and opened an investigation yesterday," the league said on Tuesday in a statement.

It added that "the LFP has applied the procedure according to which the those involved are warned of doubts about the integrity of the game."

It said that not to investigate potential corruption would "expose the LFP to criminal sanctions."

"My player told me things that seemed strange," Desplat told French sports daily L'Equipe. "I have not denounced anyone. I have not accused anyone. I will answer the questions of the commission because I saw that an investigator had been named."

Caen responded with a statement of their own.

The club said they "deplored these backstage games which we would happily do without as we focus on fighting to stay in Ligue 1."

"The LFP inquiry has to determine who gained when Guingamp made their accusations ahead of the Caen-Angers game," it added.

Angers branded the accusations brought forward as "unacceptable," and said they "call into question the integrity of the club and bring discredit to the whole of French football."

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