Top Swedish football fixture postponed due to match-fixing attempt

One of the biggest fixtures in the Swedish football calendar has been postponed due to a match-fixing attempt, the Swedish Football Federation (SvFF) has announced.

Top Swedish football fixture postponed due to match-fixing attempt
The match was due to take place at IFK Gothenburg's Gamla Ullevi stadium on May 18th. Photo: Björn Larsson Rosvall/TT

Top flight rivals AIK and IFK Gothenburg were due to meet at Gamla Ullevi in Gothenburg on Thursday evening, but the match has been suspended at the last minute after an AIK player raised the alarm about a suspected match-fixer who offered him a large sum of money on Tuesday, SvFF said in a statement.

The match-fixer made veiled threats asking the player to under-perform in the match, according to the federation.

“This is a very serious attack against Swedish football and we will never, ever accept it,” SvFF general secretary Håkan Sjöstrand said.

The AIK player was called to a meeting where he was offered a substantial amount of money to actively contribute to his team losing the match.

The football federation was informed about the incident late on Wednesday evening, it said, and it subsequently contacted the two clubs, the police and Swedish football clubs organization Svensk Elitfotboll. It was then decided to suspend the match, which all parties agreed to. Police have now opened a preliminary investigation.

“This is ultimately not about an individual match. It is a serious attack and a coup attempt against Swedish football. We will never, ever accept that and that's why it is important that we act with force,” Sjöstrand said.

“The starting point for all of our matches is that they should be secure and settled on sporting grounds. From the information we have, we can't guarantee that the match between IFK Gothenburg and AIK is a secure match and that it would be settled on sporting grounds,” he added.

It is up to the two clubs in accordance with Svensk Elitfotboll to agree when the match should be played instead.

This is not the first time that Swedish football has been rocked by match-fixing controversy. In 2016, two football players were jailed and suspended sentences handed to a further four over match-fixing in the country's third tier.

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