Eldense chief: "We've had our suspicions for a few weeks"
"We were seeing some strange line-ups; players being left out and others who had not been anywhere near the team suddenly in the starting line-up."Gremio-Lanús live online
The chairman of the board of CD Eldense, David Aguilar, confirmed in an interview with Spanish television that Cheikh Saad, the Eldense forward who blew the whistle on a case of suspected match-fixing in the side’s 12-0 loss to Barcelona B last weekend, has proof to confirm the accusation and that the matter is being investigated by police.
“After the game I received a call from someone who told me that game had been fixed, that there are several text messages confirming it and that between Monday and Tuesday he’d give me more information. He said that during the game two people had come down from the stands to say that the game had been fixed for a betting interest. One of those people was the agent of a player,” Aguilar told reporters.
“The board met on Sunday and decided to sever our ties with the Italian investment group that runs the club. We had had our suspicions for two or three weeks because we were seeing some strange line-ups, with some players being left out and others who had not been anywhere near the team suddenly in the starting line-up.”
Cornellà game also under suspicion
Aguilar also threw suspicion on Eldense’s 3-1 loss against Cornellà two weeks ago, stating that after the game some of Cornellà’s players had said to the visitors “not to run any more, not to get stuck in, because they’d earned 100 euros.”
“I am sorry to drag Cornellà into this but I have already informed them and everything is now in the hands of the police,” Aguilar said, adding that it appeared an international betting ring was behind the result. “People are talking about an international ring, based in China, according to what I’ve been told.”
"Do you think the coach selects the side?"
Several of Eldense’s players and technical staff were provided by the Italian group, leading Aguilar to be quizzed on any possible involvement: “Do you think the coach selects the team or that he receives orders as to who to play?” he responded, adding that the police are going to start interviewing players and that "there will be plenty of surprises about the players involved."
Meanwhile, Aguilar denied that the club is to call an end to the season and that the team to play Sabadell next Saturday will consist of “some of the first-team squad and players from the reserve and youth sides.”
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