Rampant scandals and match-fixing have forced authorities in Greece to notify the press that seven people have been charged with violating Greek gambling laws by placing bets on matches they knew to be compromised.
This recent scandal has completely disrupted the professional football association’s operations and has lead Greece’s Football Organization to suspend all future games. The suspension of operations in the face of scandal and match-fixing is intended to give the organization a chance to analyze and remedy a situation that has spiralled out of control.
In addition to the seven people already charged with betting on fixed matches, another eight suspects are currently under official investigation after they reportedly won over €15,000 each in state offered football pools.
Match-fixing and scandals are just some of the problems. Violence at matches has also been a reason for the temporary suspension.
The Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) President Sofoklis Pilavios announced news of the suspension after EPO delegates approved the move by a 49 to 7 margin. Pilavios stated in a press release, “We are facing a very major problem of violence. We have a choice to make: Do we want football in the hands of hooligans, violence, and match-fixers, forgers, and liars? A game with deals made under the table, exploited by politicians, a game of violence and threats? Or do we want a game based on strong institutions and rules and strong moral grounding?”