FIFA have been notified by the governing body’s internal security representatives that the World Cup is under threat from match fixers, according to a report in The Daily Mail newspaper.
Ralf Mutschke, FIFA’s head of security and a former Interpol Executive, is prepared for the potential of fixing attempts. In a recent interview, he said:
“We know warm-up matches were thrown in the last World Cup so that is also useful information to help us counter things. We are not expecting fixers to be traveling to Brazil and knocking on the hotel door of players or referees but I know there will have been approaches to players and referees.
“I cannot tell you the teams we are watching most closely. I can’t tell you the groups which we are watching most closely. But I will say that England’s group is not the highest risk.”
Under Mutschke’s direction, FIFA appears prepared to intervene even during games if necessary to maintain the integrity of the competition:
“We had training sessions with referees in Zurich. We are also going to meet them prior to kick-off and we also will visit the team and players for security sessions. We will give them a reminder to report an approach from fixers.
“We have an officer in the stadium and he will act on my decision if necessary. It will depend on the information and the response required.
“He can just monitor the situation regarding players, referees, others. He could approach people during half-time or directly after the game.
“He also can use technical equipment to identify possible fixers in the stadium.”
Let’s hope that FIFA cuts out any match fixing that would destroy our game. In the meantime, for legal methods, be sure to check out the World Cup Betting Guide.