My grandfather, Andras Kosztandy, left, with the Hungarian delegation at Wembley Stadium, 1948 Olympics. Had he been alive for the match-fixing scandal, it would have broken his heart.
As the editor and proprietor of The 11
, I do my best to keep make sure this website doesn’t get called a blog. To me, the best blogs out there are personal, where there’s no real separation between the writer and website itself. One is an expression of the other.
With The 11, I’ve strived to make it read more like a tradtional print magazine; incorporating a lot of writers, covering the games, players and issues surrounding the game as honestly as possible. Yes, there is passion in what we do — but it’s measured by our journalistic instincts. Bloggers often work free of those restraints.
But, over the last few months, what began as a simply gnawing feeling in my gut has grown into a full-blown case of cynicism. And rather than try to hide it, I am going to become a blogger and share a lot of myself with you.
And it has to do with the ugly issue of match-fixing. From a tainted 2009 game in the Canadian Soccer League — a league which itself admits has $185 million gambled on it in a year — to the busting of the Croat ring led by Ante Sapina, to the new Europoli investigation which suggest 680 games have been tampered with, from World Cup qualifiers to Champions League matches. In an article that appeared on ESPN’s site last week, writer Brett Forrest made this stunning statement about the upcoming Gold Cup. “Over coffee in a cafe in one of Singapore’s shopping districts, a prolific fixer explained to me that he had already arranged to rig the entirety of this July’s CONCACAF Gold Cup in the U.S. He wouldn’t touch the championship game, he said, because that wouldn’t be right.” Read the rest of this entry »