FIFA Partners up with the UN to Launch an Integrity Program

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FIFA, the International Federation of Association Football, partnered up with UNODC, United Nation’s Office on Drugs and Crime, to launch an integrity program aiming to reduce match-fixing on a global scale.

FIFA Teams up with the UN to Fight Match-Fixing

FIFA and the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) teamed up to launch the FIFA Global Integrity Program and improve soccer’s integrity by educating and providing resources to FIFA’s 211 members. The association would equip its members with anti-corruption tools that would work on a local level by providing a virtual workshop, consisting of three modules that focus on the game’s integrity and a global network for integrity officers.

FIFA’s president Gianni Infantino said that match-fixing is a threat to the game’s integrity and credibility worldwide. He said that FIFA would work with experts from UNODC, and the program is a big step towards protecting the integrity of the game by helping members of the association reduce match-fixing.

Match-Fixing Is a Global Issue 

Match-fixing has been one of the biggest issues for the association. At the beginning of 2020, FIFA introduced a new integrity toolkit to clamp down fixed matches. One of the initiatives includes developing strong integrity structures that help boost the security of soccer games on a local and international level. 

During an integrity meeting last week, the Football Kenya Federation asked lawmakers to take active measures against match-fixing. The federation asked for disciplinary action against people who are involved in match-fixing.

However, according to Sportradar, a leading integrity firm, corruption is becoming more organized, and match-fixing could rise due to the current situation and the pandemic’s impact on the global economy.

Last year Tan You Chen, Sportradar’s senior manager of Integrity Partnerships in Asia, stated that match-fixers would hide in plain sight. They would control players by sponsoring them. A match-fixer could corrupt two players from each team.

While clubs have financial issues during the pandemic, they can become an easy target for match-fixers. On the other hand, players are more likely to accept spot-fixing, which means to pay a player to underperform.

How Will the Program Work Work?

The FIFA Global Integrity Program would encourage any members, including coaches and players, to report match-fixing signs and recognize any harmful activity. Integrity Officers Community Platform would be launch online by FIFA. It will include integrity officers from all of the associations’ members around the world. 

The confidential platform will be an online network of integrity officers who share their experiences and challenges regarding harmful practices and promote the game’s integrity by creating effective mechanisms to fight match-fixing.

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