Eldense coach Filippo Vito di Pierro has been arrested as part of a match-fixing investigation into his team’s 12-0 loss to Barcelona B on Saturday.
The record-equalling win for the Spanish champions’ B side relegated Eldense from Segunda Division B, with the Elda club’s management board announcing they would temporarily cease sporting activities.
The Eldense board subsequently requested the league launch an investigation into possible match-fixing, while in a statement, they also revealed their intention to sever ties with an Italian investment group who had partnered with the club.
LaLiga president Javier Tebas confirmed the probe on Monday, with Vito di Pierro detained the following day. Spanish news agency EFE reported Italian investor Nobile Capuani had also been arrested. Both Vito di Pierro and Capuani deny any wrongdoing.
“We are going to look into it because the Eldense board have asked us to and the result at half-time [8-0] was out of the ordinary,” Tebas told reporters.
David Aguilar, president of Eldense’s managing board told Cadena Cope he was “tremendously ashamed” of the events in Barcelona and, contrary to the club statement, pledged to fulfil the club’s playing obligation using youth players.
“We have to get to the end of this. What we saw at the Mini Estadi was not football and I was tremendously ashamed,” he said.
“Now we will use youth team players for our remaining games, who I’m certain will compete more than those that played on Saturday.”
There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing on the part of Barca B, but speaking ahead of Barcelona’s league match against Sevilla, first-team coach Luis Enrique outlined his desire to see football stamp out the problem of match-fixing.
“[The subject of match-fixing] is a delicate one and one which must be treated with appropriate seriousness,” he told a news conference.
“It seems right to me that it is followed up, as we must rid football of incidents like this, at the professional level, amateur level or whatever level.
“We have already seen situations like this in other countries.”
Referring to the ongoing probe specifically, he added: “The onus is on Eldense and has nothing to do with Barcelona.”