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Man United star named in match fixing probe


Manchester United's Ander Herrera faces a spell on the sidelines

Manchester United's Ander Herrera faces a spell on the sidelines

Manchester United's Ander Herrera faces a spell on the sidelines

Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera and Swansea winger Jefferson Montero are among 41 people named in a match-fixing probe in Spain.

An investigation carried out by the anti-corruption prosecutors' office alleges that €965,000  was paid in cash by then Real Zaragoza coach Javier Aguirre and nine of his players, including Herrera, with their club's consent to the Levante players ahead of their La Liga game in the 2010-11 campaign.

Zaragoza won 2-1 in Valencia on May 21, 2011, a result that allowed them to avoid relegation to Spain's second division

A court document provided by the General Prosecutors' office to Press Association Sport states: "The Public prosecutor has filed an action in a criminal court in Valencia against the people mentioned in the document for alleged sporting fraud regarding article 286 bis 4 of Spain's penal code."

The case prosecutor, Alejandro Luzon, considers that "it was established that €965,000 would be handed to Levante in exchange for them allowing Zaragoza to win the game.

"The funds in cash reached the Levante players before the match as part of the remuneration as part of the agreement for Real Zaragoza's win."

According to Luzon, "to establish the bribe, the funds provided by Real Zaragoza were taken out in cash by some club members", of which Herrera was one.

The document shows that 50,000 euros were deposited in the accounts of Aguirre, financial director Francisco Porquera Perez and nine players on May 19, 2011.

Real Zaragoza and their former club president Agapito Iglesias are named in the document.

Players, including Swansea's Montero, but no coaches or club executives of Levante, are on the list. Also named in the document is Atletico Madrid captain Gabi, a member of the Zaragoza team at the time.

A Swansea spokesman, asked about Montero being named, said: "We have had no contact from anyone regarding the matter."

The alleged actions are stated as sporting fraud by article 286 bis 4 of Spain's penal code in which "members of clubs and sportsmen, officials and referees, involved in conduct that has the finality to fix a sporting result face criminal charges".

This is the first case of match-fixing in Spain.