Two probes investigate matches in Tunisian football

By Romain MolinaFootball Writer, Spain
The Tunisian flag
Games in Tunisian football are being investigated

Football games involving Tunisian teams are being probed by the French police and the country's football federation.

In France the probe centres on a large sum of money placed on a team to win a Tunisian first division game.

A separate development saw the Tunisia Football Federation (FTF) suspend a regional league to examine allegations of match manipulation.

The FTF has taken the information to Tunisia's Attorney General and have set a two week deadline.

"The entire file, as well as a video, was given to the Attorney General," the FTF added.

"In conclusion, the federation will severely and rigorously deal with anything that would affect the sports charter and match tampering."

The suspension came after the federation "received information indicating that there is a suspicion of tampering with the results of one of the matches of the Sidi Bouzid regional league."

The FTF investigation comes just weeks after Francaise des Jeux (FDJ), the government-owned company that runs France's national lottery, flagged up a suspicious bet involving Tunisian clubs.

Cash bets of more than 32,000 Euros (US$36,000) were placed on US Ben Guerdane to beat ES Metlaoui in early April, all the activity happened just hours before the match and around the French city of Nice.

Ben Guerdane went on to win the match 1-0 thanks to a 53rd minute penalty on 7 April.

It was not the first time that FDJ had raised concerns over matches involving Ben Guerdane, having issued warnings twice last year.

In those instances the sums involved were over 80,000 Euros (US$90,000) and were also placed around the city of Nice.

Ben Guerdane went on to win both matches which ensured they avoided relegation from the top-flight.

The alert from FDJ also prompted the overall body that oversees betting in France, the ARJEL, to flag up the suspicious behaviour.

This third incident in April resulted in the French police getting involved through the SCCJ, which deals with betting racing and sports in France.

Despite being approached Ben Guerdane has not commented on the French investigation.

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