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Abete: League suspension not the answer

30 May 2012 16:47:07

Abete: League suspension not the answer

Italian football president Giancarlo Abete has rejected the suggestion that football in Italy should be suspended for up to three years in a order to weed out match-fixing from the game.

Italy's Prime Minister Mario Monti said on Tuesday that professional football in Italy could benefit from a break of "two to three years" after the latest developments in an ongoing match-fixing investigation hit the headlines earlier this week.

"I understand and share Monti's bitterness. It is the bitterness felt when values are lost," Abete said on his federation's website, figc.it.

"In a delicate moment for a country, we need to avoid the risk of generalisation and demonising.

"I am in agreement that those that have done something wrong must pay, but to stop the leagues would mean to damage football.

"It would hinder those that are working in an honest way, which is the majority of our system as well as the loss of thousands of jobs. It's not a solution.

"The match-fixing and betting scandal is a very ugly chapter in our football. Several people have been accused of illegal acts that should be sanctioned at all levels should they be found guilty.

"However, Italian football is made of 1.4million registered members, of over 700,000 games a year, of thousands of honest professionals and in order to respect them, we must avoid the risk of generalising."

Nineteen people, among them Lazio captain Stefano Mauri, were arrested on Monday and many others are due to be questioned by prosecutors.


PA

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