Soccer players' union FIFPro to launch match-fixing hotline
December 19, 2012 -- Updated 1857 GMT (0257 HKT)
Napoli captain Paolo Cannavaro is appealing a six-month ban for failing to report a match-fixing approach
- Worldwide soccer players' union FIFPro launches project to combat match-fixing
- Players will be able to report any illegal approaches or behavior via an online tool
- FIFPro also to raise awareness of the problems among players, coaches and referees
- Match fixing cases in South Africa and Italy have emerged recently
(CNN) -- In the past week sanctions have been handed down in both South Africa and Italy in relation to a growing trend that is fast becoming a stain on soccer's integrity -- match-fixing.
But FIFPro, the worldwide players' union, are preparing a project to tackle fixing, that will include an education program and an online tool for their members to report illegal approaches.
Match-fixing has proved a particular problem for Italian football in recent years.
Napoli were hit with a two-point penalty that dropped them from third to fifth in Serie A as part of an ongoing investigation, though they vehemently deny any wrongdoing. Defender Paolo Cannavaro is appealing his six-month ban for failing to report an illegal approach.
Juventus coach Antonio Conte recently returned from a 10-match touchline ban imposed for failing to report match-fixing while coach at Siena.
Read: Napoli hit by match-fixing related points deduction
In 2006, Juve were stripped of two league titles and relegated to the third division of Italian football -- before later being reinstated in the second tier -- for their part in the "Calciopoli" scandal.
The Secret Footballer says in the early days of in-play betting players used to make money by manipulating elements of the match such as who would win the first throw in.
Match-fixing in football
Juventus fans hold up three stars to signify the 30 championships won by the club, but two in 2005 and 2006 have been struck off the official records after the "Calciopoli" match-fixing scandal.
Juventus revived under president Agnelli
Elsewhere, the president of the South African Football Association (SAFA) and four other officials were suspended this week as part of an investigation into match-fixing ahead of the country hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2010.
It is alleged four friendly games were prearranged for the benefit of convicted Singaporean match-fixer Wilson Perumal and his Football 4U organization.
FIFPro have European Union funding behind their 'Don't Fix It' project and will be working closely with Birkbeck University and European soccer's governing body UEFA.
The initiative will be launched in nine countries: England, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Romania, Scotland and Slovenia.
"In the past few years, the football world has realized that match fixing is one of the biggest threats to the game, maybe even its biggest threat," FIFPro said in a stament on their website.
"It is not solely a problem of individual countries, as recent reports and incidents have proven that match fixing is widespread in numerous nations on all continents: from Finland to Zimbabwe, from Malaysia to Italy.
"In FIFPro's opinion, one of the ways to reduce the incidence of match fixing and the potential for match fixing in football is education of the players: the campaigns need to be taken into the dressing rooms of the clubs."
Once their online reporting method is up and running FIFPro estimate a total of 12,000 players and 20,000 people associated with the game will be able to disclose any bullying, intimidation, harassment, and inappropriate approaches.
Today's five most popular stories
Part of complete coverage on
December 16, 2014 -- Updated 1123 GMT (1923 HKT)
After 20 years, more than 300 goals and a host of major honors, Thierry Henry has called time on his glittering football career.
December 19, 2014 -- Updated 1014 GMT (1814 HKT)
They do things differently at Sociedad Deportiva Eibar, up in the mist-cloaked valleys of the Basque country. And it is working.
December 10, 2014 -- Updated 1353 GMT (2153 HKT)
He might be struggling to score goals for Liverpool, but Mario Balotelli's cheeky tweet about the British monarch hit the spot during the World Cup.
October 28, 2014 -- Updated 1253 GMT (2053 HKT)
They splash the cash on the world's best players, now Real Madrid are giving the Bernabeu the same treatment with a bling makeover.
October 27, 2014 -- Updated 1309 GMT (2109 HKT)
Football world mourns South African captain Senzo Meyiwa who was shot and killed during a botched robbery in a township near Johannesburg.
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1348 GMT (2148 HKT)
From the ancient ruins of Rome, a new empire rises. But the eyes of the city's newest gladiator light up at thoughts of the Colosseum.
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1622 GMT (0022 HKT)
Once part of Germany's largest Jewish sports club, now he's the first ISIS suspect to stand trial in a country left shocked by his alleged radicalization.
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 1411 GMT (2211 HKT)
One goal in eight matches for new club Liverpool, and dumped by the Italian national team -- Mario Balotelli has yet to shine on his English return.
October 18, 2014 -- Updated 1819 GMT (0219 HKT)
Should a convicted rapist, who has served their time in prison, be allowed to resume their old job? What if that job was as a high-profile football player?
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 1247 GMT (2047 HKT)
After 10 years of golden glory, it's easy to see how Lionel Messi has taken his place among the football gods.
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 1034 GMT (1834 HKT)
When will the tears stop? A leading Italian football club is pursuing a new direction -- under the guidance of its new Indonesian owner.
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 2241 GMT (0641 HKT)
Norwegian 15-year-old Martin Odegaard is the youngest player ever to feature in a European Championships qualifying match.
October 10, 2014 -- Updated 1310 GMT (2110 HKT)
After revolutionizing cricket with its glitzy Twenty20 league, India has now thrown large sums of money at a new football venture.
October 2, 2014 -- Updated 1453 GMT (2253 HKT)
Get ruthless. That is Rio Ferdinand's message to soccer's authorities in the fight to tackle the scourge of racism.
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 1328 GMT (2128 HKT)
He's just 15 and the world is seemingly already at his feet. Norway's Martin Odegaard is being sought by Europe's top clubs.