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Stoichkov to Be Questioned over Match-Fixing Statements - Report

Sports | October 1, 2012, Monday // 12:03| Views: 1144 | Comments: 0
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Bulgaria: Stoichkov to Be Questioned over Match-Fixing Statements - Report Bulgarian football legend Hristo Stoichkov has stated that several teams have been involved in match-fixing. Photo by BGNES

Bulgarian authorities are to question former Barcelona striker Hristo Stoichkov regarding his recent criticism of betting related match-fixing in the country, according to a local media report.

Stoichkov is to be questioned in Bulgaria's Chief Directorate for Combatting Organized Crime on Thursday, local media have revealed.

The authorities want the legendary Barcelona forward to shed more light on his statements that the Bulgarian state and the Bulgarian Football Union have failed to stop the illegal activities going on in the country's football championship.

Recently, Stoichkov, who is currently coaching the team of Litex Lovech,  called upon Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov to deal with betting related match-fixing, suggesting that Tsvetanov may have been "afraid" to tackle the issue.

"I'm personally not afraid to speak, I'm not afraid of anything," Stoichkov declared earlier in September.

He further stated that several teams have been involved in match-fixing.

According to the Sega daily, Stoichkov will be also questioned regarding the May 12 game in which Litex smashed relegation favorites Kavarna 5:0. It is still unclear whether it is among the 16 games in the Bulgarian championship that UEFA considers suspicious.

At the end of August, a BBC investigation revealed that Bulgaria's football is deeply involved in mafia businesses, with match-fixing and money laundering being just the tip of a criminal iceberg that lurks beneath the surface of the game.

The BBC investigation was triggered by continuing reports that football in Bulgaria is riddled with corrupt practices including match-fixing and the illegal procurement of European Union passports for overseas players.

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Tags: Hristo Stoichkov, Litex Lovech, match-fixing, betting, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, football, illegal
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