Ligat Ha'Al hits crisis

By Simon Griver, June 30, 2011

Israeli football has been rocked by police investigations into alleged systematic match-fixing in Ligat Ha'al with the involvement of leading club owners, coaches and players linked to gambling rings controlled by organised crime.

The investigation has reached the very top with Israel FA chairman Avi Luzon questioned by police under caution.

After Luzon was released without charges, IFA CEO Ori Shilo said: "The IFA and police are on the same side. All the information that we have is being passed on to the police and it is our top priority to clear football of all suspicion."

Hapoel Petach Tikva are at the centre of the inquiry. Club owners Tomer Sinai, Gal Hatzor and former coach Yuval Naim have all been arrested but there have been no charges so far.

Investigations currently focus on the match between Hapoel Petach Tikvah and Hapoel Haifa on April 16, when Haifa scored a late winner in a 3-2 victory.

Last updated: 3:36pm, June 30 2011