Asian Football renews integrity partnership with Sportradar27th January 2020 10:20 am GMT
The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has agreed a new long-term partnership with sports data and integrity solutions provider Sportradar.
Sportradar has worked with the AFC since 2013 and will continue to support the confederation’s integrity unit with its intelligence and investigation services through to the AFC Asian Cup China 2023.
The partnership has already resulted in a marked decrease in match-fixing issues in Asian football and the successful prosecution of several landmark cases, including life bans against four Central Asian players caught match-fixing within AFC competitions during 2017 and 2018.
This was enabled by the AFC integrity mobile app which launched in 2017, allowing fans, players and officials to report concerns directly to the AFC Integrity Unit.
Under the terms of the new agreement, this app will be upgraded to include reporting of doping, bullying and harassment, with Sportradar also providing anti-doping, age fraud, stadium security and compliance services as part of the deal.
"Sportradar have been a valued and trusted partner of ours since 2013, and we are very proud of what we have accomplished together to help protect the integrity of Asian football,” said AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa.
“However, we cannot stand still and become complacent, that is why our cooperation has evolved over the years to include detection, safeguarding, prevention and reporting measures. Through this, Asian football has the level of integrity protection that befits our loyal and passionate fans across the continent.”
Sportradar chief executive Carsten Koerl commented: “We have been proud partners of the AFC since 2013 and are delighted to be extending our integrity agreement over the next four years. Our partnership has been characterised by action and innovation in the fight against match-fixing, and strong cooperation has been central for this. From day one, the AFC have sought to make integrity their top priority, and this has led to many positive results, including a clear decline in match-fixing issues across Asia.”
AFC general counsel and director of legal affairs Benoit Pasquier added: “The partnership and collaboration with Sportradar has been a real success story. They have provided excellent support in helping with key investigations and at the same time we have seen a significant reduction in the number of matches which are of concern. It demonstrates, while there is no room for complacency, that we are prepared to take on those who wish to manipulate our sport.”