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FA denies match-fixing reports
 
Date: 02-Sep-2008       
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The Ghana Football Association has denied extracts of a book published by a Canadian author claiming that the 2006 World Cup second round clash with Brazil was fixed.

Journalist Declan Hill writing in the book ‘The Fix’ says an Asian betting syndicate influenced the result which led to Ghana’s 3-0 defeat at the hands of the South Americans.

In view of the allegations made against the Ghana Football Association and players of the senior team, the FA has lodged a complaint with the Ghana Police Service to investigate the matter and while legal action would be instituted against Declan Hill and the publishers of the book.

An FA statement read: “In view of the seriousness of the allegations against the Ghana Football Association and its players, we have decided to pursue the following lines of action.

(i) We have lodged an official complaint with the Ghana Police Service to investigate the allegations which are criminal in character and possess the unbridled tendency to impugn the sovereign integrity of Ghana.

(ii) We have decided to institute legal action against Declan Hill, the publisher of his book, “Sichere Siege” and publishers of the German Magazine, “Der Spiegel” for publishing defamatory statements about the Ghana Football Association and its players.

(iii) Without prejudice to the foregoing, we have decided to seek the advice of our lawyers on any further cause of action that may be available against Declan Hill, and publishers of the defamatory statements.

“Taking a definite step on the matter, we wish to assure all of the FA’s preparedness to utilise and collaborate with the relevant security agencies at both the national and international levels to go into the matter and clear the good and hard won reputation of our team in particular and Ghana Football as a whole.

“We wish to place on record that the FA has confidence in the integrity, commitment, and dedication of players of the Black Stars and notes with great pride the determination, sacrifice, toil and passion with which these gallant stars have lifted and continue to lift high the flag of Ghana.”

According to a report to be serialised in the German magazine Spiegel from Monday, former Ghana international was used to influence the players during the 2006 World Cup tournament in Germany.


Full text of FA statement:

The attention of the Ghana Football Association has been drawn to a string of news items in the media alleging accounts of match fixing against members of the Senior National Team, the Black Stars in the 2006 FIFA World Cup second round match against the National Team of Brazil.

The Football Association takes a very serious view of these allegations and wishes to assure the whole nation and decent soccer lovers of its determination to go into the bottom of this matter.

A critical review and analysis of the allegations attributed to Mr. Declan Hill pointedly reveal that his story was not based on any factual circumstances. He seemed to have relied heavily on secondary or hearsay evidence which remains uncorroborated by his alleged key witness whose identity he refuses to disclose.

In the first place, our Players were going to earn more than the US$30,000 that had allegedly been offered them to throw away the said match. There does not appear to be a reasonable basis or motivation to throw away the match for an amount lower than the bonus offered for the said match. Coupled with the huge financial gain from a win and the resulting effect of a win on the respective careers of our players, there does not appear to be a reasonable basis or motivation to throw away the said match. Furthermore, a win against Brazil would have landed the Black Stars in the Quarter-finals with its attendant enhanced financial gains and prestige.

Interestingly, Declan Hill claimed that as at 25th May 2006 when the World Cup event had not started, the deal had been sealed to fix matches involving Ghana. How then did Ghana win its matches against the Czech Republic and the United States if any such deal existed? Mr Declan Hill’s allegations could best be a figment of his own imagination. Many other disingenuous allegations which cannot be tested against common sense find copious expression in his statements.

These notwithstanding, it is our firm belief that our players are patriotic and will under no circumstances compromise their pride, integrity, personal reputation, honour, and future for such indecent monetary considerations.

In view of the seriousness of the allegations against the Ghana Football Association and its players, we have decided to pursue the following lines of action.

(i) We have lodged an official complaint with the Ghana Police Service to investigate the allegations which are criminal in character and possess the unbridled tendency to impugn the sovereign integrity of Ghana.

(ii) We have decided to institute legal action against Declan Hill, the publisher of his book, “Sichere Siege” and publishers of the German Magazine, “Der Spiegel” for publishing defamatory statements about the Ghana Football Association and its players.

(iii) Without prejudice to the foregoing, we have decided to seek the advice of our lawyers on any further cause of action that may be available against Declan Hill, and publishers of the defamatory statements.

Taking a definite step on the matter, we wish to assure all of the FA’s preparedness to utilise and collaborate with the relevant security agencies at both the national and international levels to go into the matter and clear the good and hard won reputation of our team in particular and Ghana Football as a whole.

We wish to place on record that the FA has confidence in the integrity, commitment, and dedication of players of the Black Stars and notes with great pride the determination, sacrifice, toil and passion with which these gallant stars have lifted and continue to lift high the flag of Ghana.




Source: Ghanafa.org
 
 
 
 
 


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