Ukrainian police have accused most of the country’s professional soccer clubs of match-fixing and launched a series of raids as the country prepares to host the Champions League final.
Interior Minister Arsen Avakov says 35 clubs took part in betting scams with total profits of about $5 million a year. He adds players and referees were threatened or bribed up to 100,000 hryvnya ($3,800) to ensure the correct result.
Ahead of Saturday’s match between Real Madrid and Liverpool, Avakov says the raids show that “football must be fair play.”
A presentation given by the police accused Vorskla Poltava and Zorya Luhansk, which finished third and fourth in the Ukrainian league, of involvement in match-fixing.
Dynamo Kiev and Shakhtar Donetsk, which have won every league title since 1993, were not accused.