A Critical Mass of Corruption: Why Some Football Leagues Have More Match-Fixing Than Others

Document Type


Publication Date


Subject: LCSH

Football--Betting, Gambling and crime, Corruption


This paper examines what drives match-fixing in football and why some leagues collapse from corruption. Based on more than 220 interviews with players, referees, sports officials and law enforcement officers, the gambling industry and corrupters, three factors presented when high levels of match-fixing were observed: strong illegal gambling networks, high levels of relative exploitation of players, and perceived corrupt officials. Leagues collapsed if the public became aware of high-level corruption and an alternative market competitor was introduced.


This article was originally published in the journal, "International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship," volume 11, issue 3, 2010.



Publisher Citation

Hill, D. (2010), "A critical mass of corruption: why some football leagues have more match-fixing than others", International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, Vol. 11 No. 3, pp. 38-52. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSMS-11-03-2010-B005