• La Liga

Herrera among 41 named in alleged case of match-fixing

ESPN staff
December 15, 2014
Ander Herrera joined Manchester United last summer © Getty Images

Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera, Atletico Madrid captain Gabi and Japan coach Javier Aguirre have all been named as defendants by Spanish prosecutors in an alleged case of match-fixing involving a game in La Liga in the 2010-11 season.

Reuters reports that Spain's anti-corruption prosecutor filed its case on Monday following an investigation into Real Zaragoza's vital 2-1 victory at Levante on the final day of the 2010-11 campaign - a result that saw Zaragoza stay in the Spanish top flight.

Aguirre was Zaragoza's coach at the time, while Herrera - who moved from Athletic Bilbao to Old Trafford this summer - and Gabi were both playing for the club, with the latter scoring twice to secure the victory at Levante's Ciutat de Valencia ground.

Zaragoza's former president Agapito Iglesias, the club and the rest of the players from both sets of teams are reportedly among the defendants in the court filing, which alleges that Levante's players received €965,000 (£766,292) in total to lose the game.

According to prosecutors, Zaragoza made bank transfers to their own players and officials, who then took the money out of their accounts in cash to then give to Levante's players.

The investigating judge overseeing the case in Valencia will now decide whether to go ahead with prosecution.

AS reports that, if found guilty, the defendants could face prison sentences between six months to four years, playing bans ranging from one year to six, and a fine of up to €5.5m.

In June 2013, Spanish league president Javier Tebas included the match in a list of nine suspect games that the league was investigating for possible match-fixing, and said in October that he believed that particular game was "fixed."

Aguirre claimed innocence over the allegations on December 5, telling Japan Football Association (JFA) lawyer Yutaka Miyoshi that he was "very angry, and that he has never done such a thing as a professional football coach," while the JFA has backed the coach.

This article originally appeared on ESPN FC

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