A new case of match-fixing in Russia

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Another game in Russian football has hit the headlines as allegedly fixed, and here are the facts.

Anji

The match Anji – Tyumen was played on the 31st match day of FNL, Russia’s second-strongest football league. It was the 10th, May 2015, and it was crucial for Anji to get three points and continue to fight for a promotion into the Premier League. Tyumen had lost all their motivation by that moment.

As a result, Makhachkala won with the score 3:1. At the same time, when the score was 1:1 at the 70th minute, Tyumen’s goalkeeper Renat Sokolov conceded an odd goal. After a weak shot from the striker, he jumped away from the ball. You can watch the goal on the video below, it starts from 4:21. Sokolov didn’t play a single minute that season after that. The team’s head coach Konstantin Galkin fled from the team after the game.

The game hit the headlines after former midfielder of Tyumen, Oleg Samsonov gave an interview to Match TV channel.

“We arrived at the stadium. The goalkeeper was sitting next to me. The Coach gave us instructions, as we were going to leave when suddenly the Coach says to the goalkeeper: “Do not worry, everything will be fine.” I thought: “What does it mean, fine?”. It was 70th minute. A player from the opposing team shoots in one direction and the goalkeeper jumps the other way. After the game, we asked, what happened? He said he got blinded or saw something… Next day, we watched the video. It was a pure circus! The striker shoots in one corner, and the keeper falls into the other. The keeper says: “Guys, I played honestly, I did not do anything deliberately.” Here comes the coach: “You are all wrong, all 25 of you. And the goalkeeper is right!” We said: “We are not going to train with him.”

Samsonov added that the Coach confessed to everything to President and resigned from the club.

Goalkeeper Sokolov on a "well-deserved" vacation

Goalkeeper Sokolov on a “well-deserved” vacation

Here’s a screenshot of one of the bets. Punters made a big bet on total over 3.5 goals, estimated by bookies at 2.64. Moreover, some of them bet on correct score 3-1 with 9.7 odds.

Screen

Aleksandr Popov, FC Tumen president, confirmed all the allegations from the mass media. He was not denying anything and here is what he said to Championat.com:

“After the match against Anzhi Makhachkala, I was told that something wrong happened. Players asked me to sort everything out. They refused to let the situation rest. It’s abnormal that the goalkeeper jumps to the left when the ball goes to the right. I talked to the manager, Galkin, and he said that is was a regular moment. Then we watched that moment on video and it became clear that it’s not ok at all. So I banned Galkin and Sokolov till we figure out everything. They missed two games. I talked to the players and it all became clear to me. I agree that the goalkeeper was crooked. Sokolov once was on Galkin’s team in Volda, Ulianovsk. I didn’t want to make face to face questioning because I thought that I’ve got the situation. It’s my firm point of view: we don’t talk or deal something with the referees. We must respect them and everything will be nice. When the talks of a fixed game started on my team, I kicked out both the player and the manager”, Popov said to Championat.com.

Anzhi reacted on all the accusations of taking part in a fixed match by demanding to give any evidence. They said that even they don’t know who are playing in FC Tumen. “The game was in May and the president is talking now? It’s strange. Why didn’t he reveal all this before? We respect FC Tumen, but honestly speaking I don’t know any player from this team. The man in charge kicks out his manager and goalkeeper. Why did he mention Anzhi Makhachkala here? Does he have any proof? He may present them, otherwise, this damages our reputation”, Sergei Korablyov, general manager of Anzhi Makhachkala said to Sport-Express.

Igor Efremov, FNL president, knows nothing about that game. “I’ve read Samsonov’s interview and know as much as you. We got no information about that match. This is a big process involving the bookmakers. There was nothing strange. But we’ll investigate this case because now we have these interviews. We’ll ask Alexandr Popov about it”,  Efremov said to Championat.com.

READ MORE: Russian Premier League player admits he took part in fixed match

At the end of 2015 midfielder of Lokomotiv Moscow, Dmitry Tarasov said he played in a fixed game.  In a response, Russian Football Union President and Minister of Sports Vitaly Mutko asked the player to give proof or stop “gabbing”. Tarasov decided to take back his words.

 

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