4 Jul 2011

Arrests over Turkish football match fixing

10:02 am on 4 July 2011

Turkish police have arrested around 40 people, including the president of top football side Fenerbahce as part of an ongoing investigation into match-fixing last season.

Aziz Yildirim was taken into custody early Monday along with the club's vice-president Sekip Mosturoglu and financial chief Tamar Yelkovan.

Two Fenerbahce players - Nigerian striker Emmanuel Emenike and forward Sezer Ztrk - were also detained

Other top flight clubs were involved in the corruption swoop including Trabzonspor in the northeast, but the club's vice-president Nevzat Sakar denied that he had been arrested as reported earlier by Anatolia.

Several footballers were also among those arrested in Ankara including Genlerbirligi striker Serkan Calik and Ankaragc goalkeeper Serdar Kulbilge, both Turkish international players.

The Anatolia news agency said police searched the headquarters of Fenerbahe, the reigning champions of Turkey, who also reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League in 2008.

Fenerbahce board chairman Yuksel Gunay slammed the detention of Yildirim, a building construction businessman who has been president of the club since 1998.

A statement from Fenerbahce said never in the history of the club, which is full of honours won, has Fenerbahce been implicated in any illegal acts and never will be.

Fenerbahce clinched the league title on the final day last season by defeating Sivasspor 4-3 in Trabzonspor.

The match-fixing investigation led to many arrests last year but this was the first time such high-level officials have been taken into custody.