Three players arrested for yellow card manipulation in Australia

Three players from Australian A-League club Macarthur FC were arrested on Friday and charged with betting-related corruption and yellow card manipulation in a scandal that has rocked the top flight of Australian soccer.

Police allege a veteran south-west Sydney club player was taking instructions from an organized crime group in South America to ensure yellow cards were given in at least four A-League matches in exchange for benefits.

The alleged manipulation occurred in the games on November 24, 2023 and December 9, 2023, with failed attempts at more recent games in April and May.

The players, who were not identified by police, were charged with “engaging in conduct that corrupts the outcome of betting at an event” and participating in a criminal group.

The 33-year-old veteran gambler was also charged with facilitating conduct that impairs the outcome of betting on an event.

A fourth player from the club is also expected to be charged with betting-related corruption if he is caught by police.

Macarthur FC, which played A-League matches on all dates of the alleged fixing, said they were “shocked and appalled” by the arrests.

“The integrity of our game is a fundamental pillar and we will work closely with all relevant agencies on this matter,” the club said in a statement.

Match-fixing has affected Australian football before, but Friday’s allegations, which came a day before the second game of the A-League semi-finals, are the first time the country’s elite class has been affected.

Several British players from the lower league Melbourne club have been banned from playing football for life due to their involvement in an illegal betting ring.

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About the author: Cory Weinberg

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