Club news


08 Oct 2014
The Anticorruption Prosecutor is still investigating the case Levante-Zaragoza; ex-Depor Sergio has denied any knowledge of the case and the first comments emerged about possible attempts to bribe Depor’s players.

At the beginning of last week the Anticorruption Prosecutor (AP) interviewed the Zaragoza’s players and officials that were part of the club during the campaign 2010/11, season in which there are suspicions about a match-fixing conspiracy to save Zaragoza from relegation. The major part of the interviewed players admitted to have received money before the last game of the league tournament, but they denied that it was to pay Levante’s players to secure a victory.

Since Thursday the AP has been interviewing Levante’s players about this case, more specifically nine players were subpoenaed to testify: Héctor Rodas, Iborra, Xavi Torres, Christian Stuani, Felipe Caicedo, Miquel Robusté, Manuel Reina, David Cerrajería 'Cerra' and Juanfran.

According to newspaper El Mundo the first three men in the list refused to answer the questions of the prosecutor, while the rest said that nothing “unusual” occurred during the game they lost against Real Zaragoza (1-2).  The source understands that the AP will present a demand in a courthouse in Valencia in the coming weeks; the question is against which clubs and players. The process could take between one or two years before a verdict is reached.

The president of the LFP, Javier Tebas, commented the case during a press conference, ”There are many names in the case. I said what I knew to the police, which is I should have done. The first warning came to me through Lendoiro. He warned me that he had news regarding this situation and I told the president of Levante in order to take measures. I don’t remember talking to Agapito [Iglesias] on those days. I don’t know if Spanish football is ready to see a footballer ending at jail. On here we will end having convictions as it is happening in other countries, it won’t be strange.”

Meanwhile, ex-Depor Sergio Gonzalez has been indirectly involved in the case. Magazine Interviú published a report assuring that the ex-midfielder, who was playing at Levante UD during the season 2010/11, phoned ex-president Augusto César Lendoiro days before the last matchday of the season and warned him that the game was fixed.

The source claims that Sergio told Lendoiro that Sergio Ballesteros, the former captain of Levante UD now retired, was organizing the fraud. This report was spread across Spain and soon it appeared in all the sporting papers during Monday.

And on that same day Sergio, who is currently the head coach of RCD Espanyol, offered a press conference and denied any knowledge of the case and therefore to have called Lendoiro to warn him. The Catalan man also said that he was going to sue Interviú for printing a lie that’s affecting his honor.

Ex-Levante Héctor Rodas before declaring in the courthouse

Juan Rodriguez during the game Depor v Zaragoza of the season 2009/10

The contradictions didn’t end there, because on Monday newspaper El Mundo wrote about a new case, always involving Real Zaragoza and this time RC Deportivo. According to the source four Depor’s players were offered €200,000 in order to lose a game against Los Maños at the end of the season 2009/10.

At the time three matchdays were left and Depor were hosting Real Zaragoza at the Riazor. The Galicians were already saved, but the Aragonians were just two points above the pit, they needed the three points and won the game 0-1, at the end of the season they clinched the salvation. The team was coached by Miguel Ángel Lotina and he presented this lineup: Aranzubia – Manuel Pablo, Rochela, Lopo, Raúl – Juan Rodríguez, Sergio, Juca (Adrián 68’), Iván Pérez – Lassad (Valerón 60’), Riki (David Añon 79’). 

According to El Mundo, midfielder Juan Rodriguez, who was one of the captains at the team, received a call from an unmade person from Real Zaragoza and this figure offered €200,000 to be distributed between him Colotto, Lopo and Aranzubia if they allowed the victory of Los Maños.

Juan Rodriguez never talked of the subject with the other three players, instead he informed Lotina about the situation. And the coach talked to Eduardo Beci, who at the time was the sporting director of Deportivo. The intention of the midfielder and the coach was to report the case to the LFP through Lendoiro, but nothing happened.

El Mundo informed on its note that they contacted Lotina and that he admitted what was going on, but that he denied to give any public statement. However Lendoiro was also questioned by the paper about this case and said that he doesn’t remember to have bene informed about any attempt of bribery at Deportivo. Meanwhile Beci was contacted by newspaper La Opinión A Coruña and he denied the incident. So, the case is full of contradictions.




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