GENEVA — UEFA acknowledged Monday that its showpiece international competition had been corrupted, as it confirmed a 10-year ban of Malta player Kevin Sammut for helping to fix a 2008 European Championship qualifying match.
Sammut was found guilty of “breaching UEFA’s principles of integrity and sportsmanship” relating to manipulating results, the governing body of European football said in a statement.
UEFA did not specify exactly how Sammut was involved in fixing Malta’s 4-0 loss away to Norway in June 2007.
Sammut, who has played 37 matches for Malta since making his debut in 2005, has denied any involvement in fixing matches. He is currently under contract with club side Valletta, which represented Malta in the qualifying rounds of UEFA’s Champions League last month.
The 31-year-old midfielder and two other players were charged by UEFA using evidence gathered by the Malta Football Association. It investigated an allegation made last year by a Croatian crime syndicate member during a match-fixing criminal trial in Bochum, Germany.
UEFA cleared Sammut’s teammates, Kenneth Scicluna and Stephen Wellman, because “the findings of the disciplinary inspector are insufficient to take any disciplinary action against them.” — AP