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Match Fixing Scandal In Italy Takes Another Turn

Juventus coach Antonio Conte is set to face sporting charges for allegedly failing to report attempts to fix two matches.

The Juventus manager was questioned by the Italian Football Federation’s chief prosecutor over claims he was involved in a plan to fix the outcome of matches involving Novara and Albinoleffe while he was Siena coach.

Conte, who has denied any wrong doing, has been cleared of sporting fraud, but faces charges that he knew what was going on during the matches. If found guilty he faces a six-month ban.

The Juve boss has always maintained his innocence following the accusations made against him by his former player at Siena, Stefano Carobbio. But with an August 2 trial date looming, Conte is said to be considering a plea bargain:

“When this whole affair began, there were much more serious scenarios painted by the sporting and civil justice systems,” Conte’s lawyer Antonio De Renzis told Tgcom24.

“That scenario has been taken down a few notches and I think we are going towards a shelving of the civil charges.

“As for the sporting judges, we see that now it has been taken down from sporting fraud to simply not reporting an attempted fraud. That has again changed the scenario that had been painted.

“I think the work done during the investigation helped to show how little responsibility Conte had in the matter.”

The FIGC have been investigating the possibility that numerous games have been rigged as part of a numerous betting probes throughout Italy.

Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci is also caught up in the Calcio Scommesse scandal and he could face a three-year suspension from the game after he was charged with sporting fraud, in relation to his time with Bari.

Furthermore, Juventus midfielder Simone Pepe will have to face similar charges to those of Conte, after he allegedly failed to inform the authorities that he was aware of potential collusion while at Udinese.

Other players also being charged include Bologna’s Daniele Portanova and Atalanta’s Andrea Masiello.

It is not only the players who are in trouble. Clubs such as Lecce, Grosseto and Siena are facing the possibility of a significant point penalty for the new season or possible relegation.