Monday 19 February 2018

Three Irish footballers arrested in connection with alleged spot-fixing

Barnsley's Stephen Dawson
Barnsley's Stephen Dawson
Preston's Keith Keane
Preston's Graham Cummins

Martyn Ziegler

Three Irish footballers have reportedly been arrested in England in connection with alleged spot fixing.

Preston players Keith Keane and Graham Cummins and Barnsley's Stephen Dawson are believed to be among seven men arrested as part of the investigation.

Preston have expressed their disappointment after six of their players were named as having been arrested in connection with alleged spot-fixing.

The players - including captain John Welsh, who was a pall-bearer at Sir Tom Finney's funeral last month - have been named in a number of reports.

All have been released on bail and are available for selection.

The players named are Welsh, Keith Keane, Bailey Wright, David Buchanan, Ben Davies and Graham Cummins.

Barnsley midfielder Stephen Dawson was also arrested and bailed, according to the reports.

Preston said in a statement: "We are disappointed that individual player names are in the public domain, given that none of these individuals have been charged with any offence.

"Having had time to meet with all the individuals concerned, we reiterate our position that all players will remain available for selection by the manager and that until or unless the current situation changes it will be business as usual."

In a statement, Barnsley Football Club said they had no comment beyond being "aware of reports in the media in connection with an investigation into individuals suspected of conspiracy to commit acts of bribery and money-laundering relating to conduct during football matches".

The National Crime Agency on Thursday confirmed that seven players had been arrested, and a further six re-arrested, as part of an investigation into alleged bribery and money-laundering.

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