In the beginning of July many executive managers of football clubs were arrested, including the head of the Fenerbahçe sports club Aziz Yıldırım, because they were accused of match-fixing. One of the matches in question is the match that was played in 22th of May between Fenerbahçe and Sivasspor which ended with the victory of Fenerbahçe. Also, the match between Trabzonspor and Eskişehirspor during the 30th week of the tournament is being investigated as well. The people who were arrested are being accused of attempting to cheat at tournament matches, the fact that they have cheated hasn’t been proven yet. Still, the head of the UEFA, Michel Platini didn’t let Fenerbahçe take a part in Championship League because of the accusations.
One of the most debatable topics was that if the teams who are being accused would be forced to play in the second division but according to the Turkish Football Federation Regulations, if its only proven that the clubs meant to change the result of a match unfairly but they did not fully go through with it, then this punishment cannot be given. In the 55th article of the Turkish Football Federation Regulations (Futbol Disiplin Talimatı) it is stated that to affect the result of any match is prohibited and giving a footballer or a football club an incentive bonus is also in the extent of this prohibition. If the fact that the people and clubs who are being accused of matching fixing are proven to be guilty, according to the 55th article of the federation regulations, the accused people would not be allowed to participate in football matches for one to three years and the clubs would have to play in the second division. If the act of match fixing is only left in the level of attempt, if it was not fully gone through with, according to the 9th article of the regulations, the penalty of not participating in the matches can be reduced in half. Also, they would have to return their trophies and have to pay a fine. As you can see, how long the sentences of not being able to have a part in the premier leagues have the possibility of being reduced but for clubs being a part of the second division is a punishment that cannot be reduced. Also, the people who are being accused of match-fixing are facing 5 to 10 years of imprisonment according to 6222 articled regulation.
The Turkish Football Federation hasn’t reached a decision yet. It is not proven that the people who are arrested and the clubs who are being accused are actually guilty. There are 3 different decisions the Turkish Football Federation can decide in the end of this investigation. First, they can decide that there is indeed an offense of cheating and the federation will give the punishment they deserve. Secondly, the federation could decide that there is no enough evidence to prove the offence. Lastly, the federation could decide that in this stage of the investigation it is not possible to make a decision and thus, the case would be kept on hold for a while.
The important situation in the decision of the result of this case is that if they federation waits too long to come up with a conclusion the effect of it would be greater. For example, the football teams who were affected by the illegal acts of the guilty teams can demand compensation because of how late the punishment was given. Also, as a result of the lateness of the punishment, the teams will have to suffer a financial damage because they will not be able to participate in European leagues and these teams may demand the compensation of their loss.