Tuesday Kickoff: Gattuso investigated for match-fixing; PSG target Pogba and Mata; and more

Tuesday Kickoff: Gattuso investigated for match-fixing; PSG target Pogba and Mata; and more

South American Soccer

Tuesday Kickoff: Gattuso investigated for match-fixing; PSG target Pogba and Mata; and more

Gennaro Gattuso of AC Milan looks frustrated

Photo by Ben Queenborough/ISIPhotos.com

By DAN KARELL

Former Italy National Team and AC Milan legend Gennaro Gattuso is in the news this morning for all the wrong reasons.

Gattuso is one of six people under investigation in a match-fixing scandal that has rocked Italian soccer. The 35-year-old had his home searched by Italian police as well as former Lazio player Cristian Brocchi’s place. Police arrested four other individuals suspected of organizing a crime ring that fixed at least 30 matches in Italian soccer at the end of the 2010-2011 season, according to Italian prosecutor Roberto Di Martino.

“About 30 matches, a good part of them involving Serie A, are under investigation,” Di Martino told the AP.

“We’re seeing clear facts that despite the arrests and investigations a good part of these people continue to do what they did before,” Di Martino said later in a news conference, lamenting that past arrests have not made much of an impact. “There certainly were not big reactions in Italy, considering that things continue to go on like before.”

Gattuso and Brocchi were both connected to the four arrested through the use of wire tabs, said Di Martino, and they could be charged with “criminal association with the aim of fraud and sports fraud.” According to the investigators, the four arrested acted as a link between players and the fixers.

Here are some more stories to get your Tuesday started:

PSG TARGET POGBA AND MATA IN JANUARY

Likely worried that the player’s values will skyrocket following the World Cup, Paris Saint-Germain appear set to open up the checkbook in January for more signings.

According to a report in French publication L’Equipe, PSG is targeting France National Team and Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba as well as Chelsea playmaker Juan Mata as their preferred January signings. Pogba, the report states, would cost upwards of €40 million ($55 million) to complete the transfer. Mata would only be signed though if one of their multitude of wingers, such as Ezequiel Lavezzi, leaves the club in January.

One reason that PSG might not acquire the duo in January despite the report is that they’re both ineligible to play for another club this season in the Champions League.

BOCA OWNER TALKS UP TEVEZ RETURN

Carlos Tevez has settled well since moving to Juventus this past summer, but his former club Boca Juniors is already planning for the Argentine forward’s eventual return.

The 29-year-old former Manchester City and Manchester United star began his club career with Boca Juniors, winning not only an Argentine league title but also the Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana titles in successive seasons, before leaving in 2004 to join Corinthians in Brazil.

“I think Tevez will come back to wear our shirt. I always said he wanted to finish his career at Boca,” club president Daniel Angelici told Telam.

Numerous reports in Argentina state that Tevez could return to Boca in 2015.

QUICK KICKS

Former Tottenham head coach and player Glenn Hoddle has stated his interest in the interim head coaching position. Reserves coach Tim Sherwood will take charge of the team for now. (REPORT)

The European Commission is investigating seven Spanish clubs, including Real Madrid and Barcelona, for allegedly accepting illegal state aid. (REPORT)

Workers at the Arena Amazonia complex have gone on strike in search of better safety conditions following the death of a worker. (REPORT)

Brazilian club Santos have made the surprising signing of Internacional forward Leandro Damiao, signing the 24-year-old to a five-year contract on a reported €13 million transfer fee. (REPORT)

Fluminense will stay in the Brazilian First Division after Portuguesa was docked points for using an ineligible player in the final game of the season. (REPORT)

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What do you think of this news? Stunned to hear that Gattuso is implicated in match-fixing? Think that this could be the start of more player searches and arrests? Do you see PSG spending €40 million this January?

Share your thoughts below.

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