Turkish Football Federation (TFF) president Yıldırım Demirören held a press conference in Antalya, where the TFF board conveyed for the all-important decision over weekend, where he stated that 16 clubs involved were refered to the Professional Football Discipline Committee (PFDK) relations to 22 matches.
Antalya, Turkey / NationalTurk – Holding a press conference in Antalya on Monday morning, Turkish Football Federation (TFF) chairman Yıldırım Demirören, who was president of Besiktas only 2 months ago, stated that match-fixing alleged to have taken place during the previous season did not take place on the pitch. This will affect the penalties on match fixing.
Yıldırım Demirören stated the Football Ethics Committee submitted a report to the TFF on Thursday in which it included its investigation of the Turkish Super League. The report was thoroughly reviewed by the TFF who assembled in Antalya over the weekend.
The TFF president mentioned the Turkish football federation has decided to refer 16 clubs to the Professional Football Discipline Committee (PFDK) in relations to 22 matches. Yıldırım Demirören stated referring the clubs to the PFDK is not an attempt at intervention in the match-fixing case, but only a way to provide clubs a way to avoid paying for the actions of individuals.
Demirören added taht as of Monday the 30th April, Article 58 of the federation’s disciplinary regulations, which regulates penalties, has been amended by adding point deduction as a possible penalty for match-fixing. Yıldırım Demirören said Article 58 — which required a club to be relegated to a lower league as a penalty for match-rigging — was too harsh on clubs for individuals’ attempt to rig or manipulate matches and the results. He added that the PFDK has 2 days to finalise its decision regarding the in the match fixing indictment mentioned 16 clubs, including four top Turkish teams Fenerbahçe, Trabzonspor, Beşiktaş and Galatasaray.
Answering a question on the TFF’s talks with the UEFA regarding the fate of notorious Article 58, Yıldırım Demirören expressed the UEFA had only requested the Turkish institutions make a decision in the case. He added that Fenerbahçe withdrawing a lawsuit it filed with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the TFF and the UEFA was solely the team’s decision and that there were no talks or conditional agreements that stipulated Fenerbahçe dropping its case.
Fenerbahçe has withdrawn the appeal filed against UEFA and the Turkish Football Federation last week, seeking compensation for being barred from the 2011-2012 Champions League over the match-fixing scandal which rocked Turkish football to its very foundation.
Fenerbahçe, who had initially won automatic qualification for the Champions League as the winner of the Spor Toto Super League, was demanding 45 million euros in compensation for lost prize money, match revenues and devalued stock after the team was barred from the competition due to match-fixing claims.
The Istanbul-based club has called ex-TFF vice chairman Lütfü Arıboğan and ex-chief legal counselor Mehmet Helvacı to resign for misinforming UEFA inspector Pierre Cornu, who came to Istanbul a week before the definitive Champions League decision. last year.
The newly-elected TFF HeadYıldırım Demirören reportedly asked Fenerbahçe executives to withdraw the appeal, but Fenerbahçe’s imprisoned president Aziz Yıldırım stated that the club would not back down from the case, expressing that ‘ it is a case of honor.’
Fenerbahçe looked to get an upper hand in its challenge for the CAS appeal when the former TFF chairman Mehmet Ali Aydınlar stepped down from his post in January, declaring that he was ‘unaware’ of the details of the process.
Fenerbahçe’s withdrawal decision came on the day when the TFF’s Ethics Committee was set to present its definitive report on the match-fixing case.
The match-fixing scandal and probe concerns claims that some club officials and football players manipulated games in the Bank Asya League 1 ( second tier Turkish football) and the Spor Toto Super League, which ended in May of last year with Fenerbahçe winning the titel. In July 2011, Turkish police raided homes and football club premises, detaining 60 people suspected of fixing matches in those two Turkish leagues last season.
Many high-ranking football officials from various Turkish clubs, including Fenerbahçe and Beşiktaş, have been arrested on charges of fraud and match-fixing. A total of 31 individuals, including agents, former football players and club managers, were arrested in two waves of the probe, with Fenerbahçe Chairman Yıldırım being the highest-profile figure taken into custody. Most of these suspects have been released, including Beşiktaş coach Tayfur Havutçu and ex-vice-president Serdal Adalı.