Dear Friends and Colleagues,
The e-mail inbox is full, once again, with requests for comments on two controversial stories that have just broken in England.
Canada vs. the United States women’s Olympic semi-final: a superb match, marred with some bizarre refereeing. One extraordinary set of decisions led directly to the U.S’s equalizing goal. Canadian journalists have been demanding to know if ‘the fix was in’?
I try to never make remarks about possible corruption in matches that I simply watch. To be a referee is a pretty thankless task. Everyone is capable of making mistakes (when was the last time you got 100% on an exam?). So unless I have compelling first-hand evidence of bribes being passed, I never say if a match has been fixed simply from watching it. For me, it is matter of credibility. What I say normally about certain matches being fixed or the gang of fixers still being in operation is controversial enough.
This brings me to the second story – Chris Eaton (former FIFA head of security) has finally came out and confirmed that what I said before, during and after the South Africa World Cup in 2010 is true. There were people trying to fix matches at the tournament. They were focusing on the African teams. They were operating even after I exposed their activities two years before that in The Fix.
A number of points:
Much of the actual story of what went on in South Africa Chris leaves out.
I was hampered from exposing the complete truth at that time in South Africa by a couple of moronic British journalists, (a shocking story for anyone who believes in a tough, rigorous fourth estate. I write about it in my upcoming book).
It has taken Eaton two years to reveal the story of the fixers. We simply cannot rely on the officials or the regular sports media to properly protect the game that we love. We need an international anti-corruption agency to make sure the fixers are stopped cold and when we see bizarre refereeing in the future, we simply think that it is an accident not corruption.