Match fixing in English football took another incredible turn after the National Crime Agency arrested six people connected to another spot fixing investigation involving players in the Championship.
The sordid details were unearthed by the Sun with incredible information on former Premier League player Sam Sodji, who was caught on film bragging about his power to fix matches at a drop of a hat…or in this case, a show of a yellow or red card.
The information was gathered by an undercover reporter after compiling four month’s worth of information on the betting syndicate. Of those findings, the most incredible one was Sodje’s admission that he can arrange for players to earn yellow or red cards in exchange for pay-outs amounting to £30,000. The price goes up for a red card, or in some cases, balloons to the six digits if the fix happens in the Premier League where fines are typically higher than in the lower tier leagues.
The NCA isn’t commenting on details surrounding the arrest, opting only to say that six individuals have been arrested and are being questioned regarding the scope of their involvement in the syndicate.
Sodje’s claims, in particular, are especially damning after he was recorded bragging about his apparent match-fixing powers, even calling it “child’s play” because of the amount of money being waved in player’s faces.
“This guy came to meet me at my house and it was sorted,” Sodje was quoted as saying. “That’s how easy it is – it’s nothing.”
One particular incident occurred last February while Sodje was playing for Portsmouth. In a game against Oldham, the 34-year old Nigerian walked up to Oldham’s Jose Baxter and punched him in the gonads twice, earning a red card – and a pay-out for his actions. Even more perplexing was the reason for the attack, something Sodje attributed to referees not booking him during the match.
Nothing gets you sent off faster than knuckling up on a man’s privates, it appears.