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FIFA confident of no World Cup fixing

23 May 2014 15:33

FIFA's director of security believes the governing body have successfully mitigated the threat of match-fixing at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Former Interpol director Ralf Mutschke – tasked with protecting the honour of football – has confidence in FIFA's long-term integrity measures to ensure criminality is eradicated from the game.

Mutschke acknowledged that an event of the magnitude of the World Cup would be targeted by fixers, but said the organisation's several preventative steps have left him confident of an incident-free tournament.

"First of all, match manipulation and match fixing is the evil to all sports including football," Mutschke said.

"Football is being played worldwide and therefore we are threatened by organised crime, by criminals on a worldwide level.

"Fixers are trying to look for football matches which are generating a huge betting volume, and obviously an international tournament such as the World Cup generates this kind of huge volumes.

"Therefore the World Cup in general has a certain risk.

"Nevertheless, I do not think that from the point of security the threat of match manipulation at the World Cup is a big one.

"We established the FIFA integrity initiative in 2012. It is a holistic approach, a multi-disciplinary approach which focuses on very important issues such as information gathering, detection, risk management, investigations, sanctions, media strategy and prevention."

Mutschke added that FIFA had spent a significant amount of money of preventative measures and that betting markets for all matches at the World Cup would be closely monitored.

"Prevention is the key to success when it comes to the fight against corruption and match-fixing, for me, therefore we are investing a lot into prevention methods, together with our partners at Interpol," he added.

"We are assessing each match against vulnerability, against the risk level and therefore we have established a risk management system to allocate to each match certain criteria and determine the risk and then we will act accordingly.

"In addition we are looking to the betting market with our daughter company, Early Warning System.

"They are monitoring all matches in real time to see if there are any strange, odd movements in order to identify any match-fixing."

The 2014 World Cup begins when Brazil play Croatia in Sao Paulo on June 12.

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