A yellow card issued during an Eredivisie game has prompted Dutch authorities to investigate whether a player was fixing a prop bet for someone they knew.
“Spot Fixing” Now Elicits Response from Authorities
Dutch police are looking into what could be a potential match-fixing during an Eredivisie game. According to authorities, the case concerns a “spot-fixing” violation whereby players are paid to not so much try and alter the end-game result but to cause various accidents that are offered as betting options at sportsbooks.
Spot fixes can also be referred to as proposition bets as complacent players try to cook up some specific in-game condition that reduces the risk of detection but can still be bet on and thus drive value for the party placing the wager.
One such could be “getting a yellow card,” which is precisely what happened during Eredivisie’s game involving a player. This is the first time that authorities have looked into potential spot-fixing in the country.
According to the police inquiry, a punter placed bets totaling €3,000 on a player, which has fetched the bettor around €13,000 in total payout. Authorities have chosen not to divulge the name of the player, but Sparta Rotterdam reported that it was Tom Beugelsdijk who was pending an investigation.
Authorities may have found out that the player arranged the bets with someone they knew. Interestingly, police were only alerted because the player they are investigating had not had a single yellow card this season, making them suspicious about the way the player elicited the yellow card.
Odd Yellow Cards Will Make You a Suspect
If that is indeed Beugelsdijk, then he received the yellow card for playing rough, far from his goal, making the tackle unjustifiable and fetching him the yellow card. Sparta, though, expressed confidence that Beugelsdijk will continue to play and stay on the team’s roster. Until the investigation is completed, there could be no disciplinary action on the part of the club.
Interestingly, the Netherlands is one of the strictest jurisdictions when it comes to illegal gambling, but the country has not been addressing match-fixing as seriously. As the threat of fraud in sports grow, though, and fixers get much more inventive, a stronger response needs to be elicited from authorities to ensure that anyone who attempts to fix a game thinks twice as the consequences could be career-ending.
Match-fixing is happening on all levels of sports, but mostly in the lower tiers and leagues where officials are bound to be more inclined to turn a blind eye to violations. Sportradar has cautioned that “the cancer of match-fixing is back” and that criminals are becoming far more inventive in avoiding suspicion.