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Match-fixing

Investigators begin match-fixing probe of nine Liga games from last season

Levante and Racing among those being investigated for betting and bribery allegations

Anticorruption investigators are to investigate nine Spanish league matches over allegations of match-fixing the president of the Professional Football League (LFP), Javier Tebas, has confirmed.

The matches - three in Primera División and six in Segunda - were played last season. The probe, which was initiated at the LFP's behest, is based on suspect betting patterns and alleged attempts at bribery over ineligibly fielded players after the event.

One of the Primera matches under suspicion is Levante-Deportivo, played on April 13. The visiting side was 3-0 up at halftime and eventually won the game 4-0. Levante player José Javier Barkero accused several leading teammates including club captain Sergio Ballesteros of rolling over. The large number of bets placed on a 3-0 scoreline aroused the interest of the police.

Tebas did not say which other Primera games are under suspicion at the request of investigators.

In Segunda, the game between Racing Santander and Hércules on the final day of the season is one of the six being scrutinized. Racing needed to win to stay in the division, which it did, but also hope Murcia lost, which the coastal club did not. According to Girona president Joaquim Boadas, the Cantabrian club later attempted to bribe him to sign a letter confessing to fielding two ineligible players against Racing, which carries a forfeit of three points, allowing Racing to finish the season above Murcia.

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