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Ban sought for United's Ander Herrera, others over 2011 Levante-Zaragoza match-fixing

Published on: 14 February 2018

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MADRID -- Manchester United's Ander Herrera is among 30 players who Spanish prosecutors want jailed and banned for their connections to match-fixing in La Liga seven years ago.

Prosecutors are asking for a two-year prison sentence and a six-year ban for the case involving clubs Levante and Real Zaragoza at the end of the 2010-11 season.

Among the players accused are Herrera, Leicester City's Vicente Iborra, Atletico Madrid captain Gabi Fernandez and River Plate captain Leonardo Ponzio.

Former Mexico coach Javier Aguirre is facing the same sentence if found guilty in the case.

The six-year ban from soccer would be valid outside of Spain as well. It is unlikely those being accused would face prison time if found guilty because sentences of two years or less are often suspended in Spain.

Prosecutors said there is evidence that Zaragoza paid €965,000 to Levante's players to lose a match to Zaragoza.  The 2-1 victory by Zaragoza in the final round of the season allowed them to avoid relegation.

Herrera joined Athletic Bilbao after that season, then paid his own buyout clause in 2014 to move to United.

A lower court had shelved the case but it was reopened last month after an appeal by prosecutors in Valencia, where the match was played.


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