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Barça B-Eldense game was thrown, player claims amid probe

The Camp Nou reserve side's 12-0 victory has been flagged by Eldense with the Liga as potentially fixed. "There are four players involved," claims Cheikh Saad
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Barça B-Eldense game was thrown, player claims amid probe

Barcelona B’s 12-0 victory over Eldense last weekend, which relegated the Alicante-based club to Tercera División, has been reported to LaLiga by the defeated side as potentially fixed. Eldense were taken over by an Italian investment group earlier in the season, with which Eldense has now severed its ties amid allegations that some of Eldense’s players may have deliberately contributed to the score line.

Eldense forward: "Four players are involved"

Eldense forward Cheikh Saad spoke to Catalan radio station RAC-1 in the aftermath of the match and claimed that some of his teammates were had worked against Eldense to affect the outcome of the game. “I know who they are but I cannot say at the moment,” the Mauritanian striker said, adding that “four players are involved.”

Cheikh went on to say that another player had been approached before the game and was told: ‘The game is fixed. Do you want to play?’

"There were almost punches thrown"

They did not bother to ask me because they knew what the answer would be. I’d have withdrawn from the team,” Cheikh told journalist Jordi Basté on RAC-1. “Half an hour before the game I was in the team and then I wasn’t. After the game I got on the team bus and my teammates told me: ‘You should know that there are players down there [in the dressing room] who threw the match. I went back down to the dressing room and there was a row going on. There were almost punches thrown.”

"Barça B had nothing to do with it"

“There is even a leader who told the others what to do,” Cheikh added, while stressing that Barcelona B were not party to the matter. “They are not involved in any way. Barça B did nothing. They did what they had to do [on the pitch]. If it had been me I would have done the same.”

Cheikh also revealed that he had received threats after blowing the whistle on the alleged match-fix. “But I don’t care. When they let me say the names I will say them but I’m not going to go from ground to ground with people laughing at me when I always do my best on the pitch.”

Eldense bench refused to go on

Eldense striker Cheikh Saad.

One thing that was noticed immediately after the game was that Eldense made no substitutions during the 90 minutes. Cheikh claimed that he was behind the bench protest: “The coach told me I was going on but I was clear in my mind that I wasn’t going to play. I said to myself: ‘something strange is going on here.’ I told my teammates on the bench that if they didn’t want to get involved in this shit, they should refuse to go on.”

The forward also refused to be drawn on whether any of Eldense’s five Italian players were involved: “I don’t know which betting house was being talked about.”

Eldense to consider police action

The club’s chairman of the board, David Aguilar, also spoke to RAC and said that he would speak to the police to see if there was basis for a criminal investigation into a possible crime. “I’m finding out more and more every minute,” he said.