Declan Hill alleged: “They were fixing matches in front of me and I was like wow ‘what’s the biggest match you have ever fixed?’ and one of the guys goes ‘I don’t know, The Olympics or The World Cup, which is bigger?’”

What is it?

The VAR Show interview focuses on investigative journalist Declan Hill’s book ‘The Fix’ which looks at sports corruption and Hill’s examination of the world of organised crime and match-fixing in professional football.

The interview discusses the betting industry’s globalisation and exponential growth and whether this has influenced match-fixing. It discusses sports governance and the reasoning behind why players may be swayed towards agreeing to match-fixing. The conversation offers potential solutions to match-fixing. 

Who is it?

Declan Hill: a journalist, academic and consultant. He has dedicated expertise in match-fixing and corruption in international sports. 

His book ‘The Fix: Organized Crime and Soccer’ shows the new danger to international sport posed by the globalisation of the gambling market and match-fixing at the highest levels of professional football including the Champions League and FIFA World Cup tournaments and the Olympics.  As part of his investigation for his book Hill met with an Asian match-fixing gang as they travelled around the world fixing major football matches.

The VAR Show – The View And Review Show talks about all the major football leagues mostly of Europe. 

What is being said?

Declan Hill claimed: “The sports gambling market has globalised, it’s just gone nuts it’s now a $1.7tn market and that money is flowing around the world and so its ending up in places like Nepal and the gangs as you know better than I do have been working with players, working with teams in Nepal to fix games.”

“There’s two types of fixing going on. One is something that is so common the Italians call it ‘il sistema’ . It’s this grey market and it exists in Spain, Portugal, Greece, Turkey and many of the former Soviet countries. 

“It’s a system where about two thirds/ three quarters of the way through the season the teams that really need the points, they either want to win the championship or they want to avoid relegation start trying to buy points from the teams that are in the middle and much of the lost quarter of a season in Italy is just theatre.

“At the moment the football authorities around the world are so lazy, they are so indemically stupid and they have really created a sytem that tolerates corruption. If we could remove those problems, match-fixing we could deal with very easily.” 

Why should I watch it?

This is a unique viewpoint that has access to the perspective of those that fix matches. Hill alleges the scale of match-fixing is not just on lower levels but all the way up to huge sporting events like The Olympics and The World Cup. The interview talks about match-fixers’ motivations, why they can do it and offers solutions for how to stop it from happening. 

Where can I see more?

Source: The VAR Show YouTube

The VAR Show: Declan Hill’s match-fixing investigation