The Irish football Association (IFA) has issued an integrity crackdown after claims were made pertaining to the breach of betting rules at an Irish League football club.
The investigation follows allegations that a player, associated with Institute FC, had asked a friend to place a bet on Ballymena United in a match they lost 2-1.
As part of IFA rules, players are prohibited from placing bets on any team, including their own, in any tournament or league in which the player’s team competes.
Screenshots of Facebook conversations revealed that a player had asked a friend to place a bet using the Bet365 mobile app in the hope that they would not get caught.
A spokesperson from the IFA commented: “The Irish FA’s Integrity Officer, in partnership with UEFA and the gambling industry, monitors activity on matches where betting opportunities are offered.
“While no suspicious betting activity was flagged in respect of this match, inquiries are continuing to see if there has been a breach of the Irish FA’s betting rules.”
Rules set out by the IFA state that players can neither place a bet on a game involving their club, nor can they wager bets on a game in a league / competition in which their club plays.
The rules add: “This includes competitions that your club is due to play in but has not yet started and competitions that your club has been knocked out of. It goes on to clarify that this also extends to bets placed via friends or other third parties.
“The reason the IFA has rules in this area is to ensure that in every match both teams and players are playing to the best of their ability and with a clear motivation to win, without any conflicting objectives for either club or any player or club official,” the rules state.
The match took place at Institute’s temporary Brandywell ground, which is currently home to Derry FC. The team has been made aware of the infractions, and are currently carrying out inquiries.