CFA pledges to fight against corruption

Updated: 2011-12-19 16:05


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BEIJING - With the trials for Chinese soccer's corruption case opened on Monday, the country's governing body for the sport released a statement to reiterate their determination to fight against corruption.

"The General Administration of Sport of China have been closely cooperating with the police to crack down on match-fixing and gambling in Chinese soccer since 2009. With the battle going deeper and wider, several criminal cases have been under investigation and the trials will open," said the statement released by the Chinese Football Association (CFA).

"Soccer corruption breached the country's law and tarnished the image of the sport as well as the healthy development of soccer in China, leading to a very bad impact on the game."

"Corruption exposed flaws in the administrative system and imperfections in the supervision mechanism," said CFA.

"The fight against corruption is a long-time effort. We need to build a solid defense to prevent corruption; at the same time, we should deepen the reform of Chinese soccer and improve the administrative system and the supervision mechanism."

China's professional leagues have been plagued with allegations of gambling, match-fixing and crooked referees for years, which, coupled with the national side's poor performances, have long made the soccer a source of disappointment for diehard fans.

The nationwide crackdown on gambling and match-fixing started in March 2009 when a high-profile committee was set up by 12 ministry-level bodies to clean up corruption in Chinese soccer.

Since then, bunches of officials, referees and former players have been detained for their involvement in corruption and match-fixing in soccer games, including former CFA vice-president Nan Yong and his predecessor Xie Yalong.

Zhang Jianqiang, ex-director of the Chinese Football Association (CFA) referee committee, became the first defendant to stand trial. He is facing charges of bribe-taking and bribery by non-public servants in the northeastern Chinese city of Tieling on Monday.