QPR Report Twitter Feed

Monday, December 08, 2008

No QPR in Team of Week...Tomassi: Good Guy in Spain Match Fix Claim....Year Ago QPR Bottom...QPR/Gulf ...Flashback: Sibley Replaces Mullery....Dichio

- UPDATE: No QPR Players in Championship Team of the Week

- If interested see also:
- Supposed QPR Target Wins Player of the Month
- Vinnie Jones Fights and Gets Arrested-
- How "Lee Cook HAS Signed for QPR" Leaked Out
- Video Snippets From Some Past QPR Games

- "When Football Was Football: A Nostalgic Look at a Century of Football"
- The Different Types of Managerial Departures

Football 365 - Will It Be Moggigate Two In La Liga?
- Today, this column should have been doing the skippiest of Snoopy dances, regaling readers with reports of hot roasting action to rival any Manchester United Christmas party.
- Instead, it is standing with lips pursed and arms folded and must share tales of bad behaviour and dodgy deals that threaten to undermine the already rickety foundations of the game in Spain.
- On the pitch, la Liga appears to be in rude health with every round producing stonking football fun.
- This weekend alone brought 44 goals in the ten matches, taking la Primera's total to 414 strikes after fourteen rounds - a record for any league of 20 teams.
- But none of this seems to matter any more.
- That's because a series of scandals has broken that could have a similar devastating impact to those that so tainted the Italian game.
- Football and funny business have always skipped happily into the sunset, hand in hand, and will do so forever.
A game where unscrupulous owners can turn from zeroes to heroes, almost overnight, will always attract tricksy types that can best be described as 'wrong-uns'.
For years, Spanish football has chosen to mix its metaphors by turning the other cheek to such scoundrels and sweeping all its seedy goings-on under the carpet.
But unless la Liga's leaders plan to stand whistling next to a bungalow-sized lump under their shag pile brandishing a 'Move On' sign, then one of the game's most damaging demons is finally going to have to be faced down.
At the beginning of last week, a recording of a conversation between Real Sociedad president, Iñaki Badiola and Jesuli - a journeyman footballer who played for second division side Tenerife last season, was released by the Basque club's boss.
On the tape, Badiola is heard apparently asking how much Jesuli and a number of his colleagues were paid to lose a game against Málaga in the final round of last season. The apparent reply from Jesuli was around 6,000 euros.
Once the transcript was circulated in the press, the Real Sociedad chief went on to accuse Málaga owner Lorenzo Sanz of being behind the bribe as a way of ensuring promotion to the top flight in a tight promotion race.
Badiola also hurled some mud in his rival's direction by accusing the former Real Madrid president and his son, Fernando - the current Málaga president - of being "habitual criminals and cheats".
Now Sanz is no stranger of allegations of bad behaviour. In September he was arrested in the southern city of Cordoba suspected of fraud in a ten million euro bank payment and has only just had allegations of fraud against him dropped by an Italian business partner in a real estate deal.
But the slur from Badiola was a bridge too far for Sanz who referred to his accuser as "a cancer in football" and announced that legal action would be taken against him.
"Every day, I'm more disillusioned with the world of football" sighed Sanz, claiming that Badiola was using the slurs as a smokescreen to cover his bad management of Real Sociedad.
Jesuli went into hiding but released a statement confirming that it was his voice on the tape but denying that he had taken payments to lose a game that he was unable to play in due to injury.
He also announced that legal action would be taken against Badiola for challenging his "honour" by recording a private conversation.
To date, no alternative explanation has been given by the footballer to explain his recorded remarks to Badiola.
Spooked Tenerife bosses announced that they would be asking Jesuli to make a statement to a lawyer either confirming or denying the allegations.
On its own, the scandal was strong enough to raise eyebrows in Spain but not shocking enough to kick Real Madrid or Barcelona off the front pages of the popular press, whose interests are not best served by investigating the bad behaviour of clubs they rely on for access.
However, days later another recording was released by a local TV station that raised suspicions that match fixing had taken place in the Primera.
The channel in question, Popular Television, broadcast a recording claiming that the voices heard are those belonging to Levante president Julio Romero and former player Iñaki Descarga, apparently discussing a payment taken to lose a game against Athletic Bilbao on the final day of the 2006/07 season - a game that saw the Basque team safe for another year and Celta Vigo relegated.
The extra spice to this conversation is that the transcript suggests that the Spanish FA president, Angel Villar - an Athletic Bilbao supporter - and the match referee knew that a bribe had been paid to selected members of the Levante side - a side that were already safe.
As to be expected, those accused of taking bribes to lose the game and those said to have made them have denied all knowledge of the affair and threatened legal action against the TV station that released the tapes.
"They all want the bonus now", says the voice alleged to be Descarga, club captain at the time. "If you see the game, you can't tell the match was rigged".
Later on, the 'voice of Descarga' asks what would have happened if they did not allow Athletic to win. "You would have an enemy for life...Athletic", replies the voice reportedly belonging to Romero.
The game itself was a comfortable 2-0 win for Athletic who, despite numerous missed chances on goal, were only able to make the initial breakthrough thanks to an own goal from a Levante player.
El Pais reports that a number of players apparently refused to take part in the fixing.
One of those is Damiano Tomassi, now at QPR, and a player who declined to discuss the allegations but warned that "Moggigate began with recorded phone conversations".

There are open questions over how the recordings were made, who made them and why they are only just being released.
But the accusations are so serious that the Spanish FA announced that "if we find something punishable...we'll move on it", and passed the case onto the relevant government authorities fearing that a crime has been committed.
Payments or bonuses made by interested parties to players pushing them to try harder in games at the end of the season are said to be widespread.
In fact, they are generally accepted by many in the game who claim that such inducements are justified as they are only paid if players win games. But 'Jesuligate' and the accusations against Levante are a very different kettle of rotten fish.
"This is really bad news for Spain. The allegations are serious", said Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola on Friday.
"We cannot go on playing until the end of the season with all these suspicions of match fixing".
Aside from the grown up papers, there has been little or no discussion in the likes of Marca or AS on the damaging nature of these allegations to the credibility of the Spanish game.
After all, it would take a nuclear explosion over the Spanish capital to knock a truly rubbish Real Madrid off the front pages these days.
However, the two clubs who would have suffered if match fixing is eventually proved, Real Sociedad and Celta Vigo, will not be so quick to move on.
Both are still stuck in the second division and suffering enormous financial problems.
La Real are currently in administration but have not helped their situation at all, say auditors, who claim that the club falsified their accounts to the tune of 20 million euros.
They also criticised "a lack of rigour in the management of the club" during the presidential term of a certain José Luis Astiazarán - a gentleman whose lack of rigour is now being employed in his role as President of the Spanish Professional League, one of the organisations that will have to act over the current match-fixing scandals.
Whilst both set of allegations are in the hands of lawyers and legislators, it is possible that endless investigation will see the stories quickly forgotten.
But the nightmare scenario for the Spanish game is that last week's events are merely the tip of a decidedly dirty iceberg and that those endless tall stories of conspiracies and crimes told in barrio bars, all over the country, turn out to be true. Football 365

Damiano Tomassi

QPR ON THIS DATE, ONE YEAR AGO: Anchored at the Bottom
- December 08, 2007: QPR drew 2-2 at Scunthorpe (two goals by Buzasky) and were rooted at the bottom of the Championship.
Team: Camp, Barker, Stewart, Bolder, Buzsaky (Ainsworth 92), Rowlands, Malcolm, Vine, Rehman (Timoska 74), Leigertwood, Sinclair (Nygaard 76). Subs: Cole, Balanta. Match Reports

Scunthorpe 21-23
Leicester 20-22
Norwich 21-21
COlchester 21-20
Preston 21-18
QPR 20-17

[QPR Points Table at Year End Comparison]

[Currently as of December 8, 2008: 31 points from 21 games]

- On December 31, 2007: 27 points from 25 games.
- On December 31, 2006: 27 points from 26 games.
- On December 31, 2005: 32 points from 26 games
- On December 31, 2004: 33 points from 26 games

24 years ago today Frank Sibley Back in Charge of QPR (Replacing Alan Mullery)
December 8, 1984: Frank Sibley's First Game in Charge as Acting Manager (in his second Managerial Stint). QPR drew 0-0 at home to Everton. Mullery had been axed in mid-week (even though the team had defeated Stoke 2-0). QPR's team versus Everton: Hucker - Dawes Wicks Mcdonald Neil - Gregory Fenwick Waddock Stewart - Bannister Stainrod Sub: James

Gulf Daily News - QPR coaches train Bahrain youth in Gulf Air camp
- GULF Air hosted a one-day soccer coaching session for 70 children from Bahrain's national youth development squad as part the first phase of its 'Football in the Community' initiative.
- The event, held in co-operation with the General Organisation for Youth and Sport (Goys), the Bahrain Football Association (BFA) and Queen's Park Ranger (QPR), the famous English soccer club, was part of the airline's ongoing commitment to the people of Bahrain.
- The camp was split into five different sessions including one specifically for the Bahrain women's national team.
- Bahrain's future soccer stars were given the opportunity to test and improve their skills with six of the UK's best coaching professionals from the London-based football club QPR.
- "We have a lot of experience working with young football talents," said head coach Andy Evans.
- "The ability and skills of the children we saw today were outstanding and a testament to the hard work of the Bahrain Football Association. I have no doubt that the future Beckham of Bahrain is among them."
- "This is one of the many local initiatives supported by Goys to help promote sport at the grass roots level in the Kingdom," said BFA president Shaikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa. Gulf Daily News

Ex-QPR Danny Dichio Staying With Toronto in the MLS
Dichio set to stay with Reds - Striker agrees "in principal" to new deal
Toronto FC.ca
Toronto FC legend Danny Dichio is staying with the team next season.

- In front of hundreds of Toronto FC supporters at 'The Kit Party' Thursday night, Danny Dichio announced that he is staying with the team next season after agreeing a 1 year extension to his contract. The 34-year-old striker scored 5 goals in 2008 despite being troubled by injury.
"I'm overjoyed with the new deal because it has been going on for a while," said Dichio. "We agreed in principle to the terms and I'm really happy because I wanted to get it sorted before I go back to England. I'm happy here and my family is happy here so I want to be here for a very long time."
- Dichio spent much of the summer on the sidelines after sustaining a concussion during the Canada Day defeat to Vancouver Whitecaps and the striker was unsure if he would be fit enough to play in 2009. But he feels good about his health. "There were questions about my health during the season with the concussion I got but I felt strong in the games I was involved in towards the end of last season," explained Dichio. "I'm going to be pushing for a starting role and I'm sure John Carver would expect that. I'm not going to play every minute of every game next season, but I'm sure I can make a valuable contribution."
- "I had a talk with my family and previous coaches back in England, and they told me to keep playing as long as I felt I could. I didn't want to stay for another year if I didn't feel right. I didn't want to cheat myself and the fans, but I feel strong and am really looking forward to it." Toronto

Visit the QPR Report Messageboard for additional football articles and views

Blog Archive