Italy. AGAIN...So I got an email offer from someone in Italy asking for me to help fix a soccer match. Who should be most concerned? Me, the guy, FIFA...?— Brian Tuohy (@TheFixIsInTuohy) February 21, 2017
When are people going to get smart and just shut down soccer in Italy to begin with?
Of course, this comes in the same week that Sutton United's reserve goalkeeper, Wayne Shaw, was caught spot-fixing, forced to leave the team, and permanently sullied one of the grand stories in the FA Cup.
(But there is another: Arsenal's next opponent is Lincoln City, the first fifth-level team to reach the quarterfinals of the FA Cup in over a century.)
The spot-fixing, if there is one thankful moment of this, was effectively taking advantage of that the match was at Sutton United, a similar fifth-tier side. At halftime, it was apparently being discussed at the sideline that 8-1 odds had been placed that the portly reserve goalkeeper (who I also believe was a coach) would eat a pie on the sideline.
So he ordered one and did just that!
Shaw is now under investigation by the FA, which as rules against such conduct in the top eight levels of English soccer. A conviction probably ends his career, as usual bans for this are multiple years.
Also, this week, it was revealed that at least 53 players have run afoul of similar regulations in just over two years of a Gambling Commission, including...
... wait for it...
We may finally be rid of him.
After his attempt to get Queens Park Rangers demoted from the Premier League in 2012:
- He was fined 75,000 pounds, docked six weeks wages for another 500,000 pounds, and banned 12 matches for the incidents in a last-day match against Manchster City.
- He was loaned to Marseille in France for six months, banned to just the UEFA Europa League for the relevant twelve matches, and announced he would not return to QPR -- who were relegated in 2012-13.
- He was, by May of 2013, given a two-match suspended ban for an inappropriate remark about a player from Paris-St. Germain on Twitter.
- Barton, then, inexplicably, was allowed back to Queens Park Rangers for the 2013-14 season in the Championship (second-level to the Premier League). This, after he told the media he had only joined QPR for the money AND that QPR's chairman actually said that Barton's departure had a part to play in the team's demotion!
- He lasted two years, was sent off twice, and finally left QPR for Burnley in 2015.
- West Ham wanted to sign him, but fans protested, noting Barton's long indiscipline record.
- He largely stayed out of trouble at Burnley, being a major factor in their promotion in 2015-16 to the Premier League. He was actually named to the all-league team.
- At which point he left for Scotland and Rangers. He lasted the off-season and maybe a month of the main year. Banned for three weeks after a dispute with his coach, he was finally fired from the team after a one-match ban for gambling in November of 2016.
- Returning to Burnley at this first of this year...
The Football Association has evidence, so it claims, that Barton placed over 1,260 bets on soccer matches illegally over a 10-year period (2006-2016).
It is currently unknown where the process stands -- he has asked for mitigation in a personal meeting, but how Joey Barton is ever allowed on any football pitch in the world is beyond me.
And, given the scope of the betting illegalities, one can only re-ask the question regarding that (in)famous day at Manchester City.