Tuesday Kickoff: Italian match-fixing scandal grows, Blues win Hazard & more

Tuesday Kickoff: Italian match-fixing scandal grows, Blues win Hazard & more

European Soccer

Tuesday Kickoff: Italian match-fixing scandal grows, Blues win Hazard & more

Conte (Reuters Pictures)

The big names continue to be implicated in the latest alleged match-fixing scandal in Italy.

Fresh off guiding Juventus to an undefeated season, coach Antonio Conte is now reportedly under investigation for wrongdoing while he was in charge of Siena in 2010-2011. Conte denied all allegations in comments made to the Associated Press, saying, "My story speaks clearly for itself. I've always showed moral integrity, honesty, fairness in every situation, whether as a player or a coach. I am completely innocent of any of this, as are my players."

The investigation has made its way through Italian national team camp and the number of people arrested in the last year stands at 50, including Lazio captain Stefano Mauri, and it has also resulted with investigated defender Domenico Criscito being withdrawn from Italy's Euro 2012 roster.

"He would have experienced a pressure that no human being can deal with," Italy coach Cesare Prandelli said. "He wouldn't have been in the right frame of mind. And he could also have been called up by the prosecutors at any time, before a match."

Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci is also implicated in the scandal, but he remains with the national team as Euro 2012 approaches. The team's preparations suffered a setback of a different kind as well, with deadly earthquakes in Northern Italy cancelling a scheduled friendly against Luxembourg.

Here are a few other stories to get your day going:

CHELSEA SET TO SIGN HAZARD

May continues to be Chelsea's month.

After winning the FA Cup and UEFA Champions League, the Blues have reportedly won the Eden Hazard sweepstakes, landing the Belgian playmaker from Lille for a fee of £32 million. The 21-year-old Hazard had reportedly narrowed his choices down to Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City but ultimately picked the European title holders, according to his own official Twitter feed. He'll inject youth into an aging midfield — along with other signings Marko Marin and Kevin de Bruyne — and give Chelsea a new dynamic in the attack.

The signing has not yet been officially confirmed by Chelsea.

SWANSEA HOPE FOR DOS SANTOS LOAN

Giovani Dos Santos may not have a place in Tottenham's lineup, but the Mexican attacker has no shortage of suitors, and Swansea City appears to be one of them.

The Swans are reportedly hopeful of bringing Dos Santos in next season, the final year of his contract with Tottenham. Manager Brendan Rodgers was at Mexico's 2-0 victory over Wales on Saturday, and while his club might not have the financial clout necessary to pull off a full transfer, a loan to the Premier League side would be feasible.

UNITED CLOSE IN ON KAGAWA

The rampant speculation that Shinji Kagawa would be joining Manchester United is on the verge of being validated.

The Borussia Dortmund and Japan attacker is reportedly close to a £17 million move from the Bundesliga to the Premier League but has not yet agreed to personal terms with the Red Devils. The 23-year-old Kagawa had 17 goals in all competitions for Dortmund this past season. 

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What's your take on the scandal in Italy? Do you see Hazard thriving for Chelsea? Think Swansea City would be a good landing spot for Dos Santos? Do you see Kagawa being a good fit for Manchester United?

Share your thoughts below.

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