Soccer Body Bans 41 South Korean Players on Match-Fixing Charges

Soccer’s governing body gave global bans to 41 South Korean soccer players for fixing matches in the country’s K-League.

FIFA’s disciplinary committee extended a domestic suspension to the rest of the world, it said today in an e-mailed statement. The governing body said 21 of the players, who turned themselves in during a voluntary reporting period, may be able to return to the sport within 2 to 5 years. They’ll have to do community service such as youth club coaching before regaining their eligibility, FIFA said.

The players weren’t named in FIFA’s statement.

The charges date to 2011, FIFA said. In July of that year, South Korean prosecutors indicted players from six of the K-League’s 16 teams on charges they accepted bribes to influence games.

Most of the indicted players had been forced by colleagues and gang members to take part in match fixing, the prosecutors’ office in Changwon, about 400 kilometers (250 miles) southeast of Seoul, said at the time.

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