Tiss Time, More Than Any Other Time


Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.

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10 Responses

  1. B says:

    There is another football angle to this.
    The alleged fixer is also the owner of Croydon Athletic FC ,last year’s Isthmian league div 1 south champions.
    I’m sure questions will be asked about their financing. Especially as it turns out their previous owner is now doing time for embezzlement.
    Athletic could be in a spot of bother.
    I smell another Twohundredpercent article ,the way only you can do it!

  2. Rob says:

    There was a realisation at the time that spread betting broke out that quite a few teams were kicking the ball straight out of play to win the “first throw in” spread bet, so the FA changed the rules on betting (I’m assuming the Le Tissier incident was around the same time). At the time, it wasn’t against the rules, as the only thing that was against FA rules was that you couldn’t bet against yourself (as Bronco Layne, Tony Kay and Peter Swan found out). After the realisation of the “first throw in” bets, the rules where changed so that you couldn’t bet in any game you were involved in. So while it may have been illegal, it wasn’t against the footballing rules of the time.

    “How many games have been affected by people trying, unobtrusively, to make themselves a little pot of money?”

    I can think of another one, in the early 90s (and again, not against footballing rules, but possibly illegal, so I won’t name names), where a Fourth Division side had changed their recognised penalty taker, to a young defender who was getting his first real run in the side. The player concerned was the regular taker for the reserves, and had been for the youth team, and had never missed, so the decision was made from a sporting point of view. However, the bookies wouldn’t be expecting this player to be a likely goalscorer, so he was around 40/1 to be the first goalscorer. He and his team-mates decided to take advantage of this, and as luck would have it were awarded an early penalty.

    The team bragged about it in the local press, but nothing ever happened to them in terms of repercussions.

  3. Danc says:

    Great piece, I’ve been arguing this since the story broke.

    PS. Heard the one about the fast bowler and the wicketkeeper who bet on their own team to lose at 500-1? Guess what, their team lost a match that was almost impossible to lose.

    Imagine if they had been Pakistani.

    This is no defence of the Pakistan players. It’s a call for balanced reporting.

  4. Peter says:

    Good point made by Danc – maybe if the player concerned had been someone other than Matt Le Tissier – a generally popular figure for most football fans outside Portsmouth, and instead been a foreign player, then the media frenzy would probably have been considerably greater.

  5. Stephen Campbell says:

    With Matt Le Tissier, as he puts it, “charging around the pitch” I can’t believe suspicions weren’t aroused by such unusual behaviour at the time.

  6. Matt says:

    The two incidents are not alike. Le Tissier was not trying to throw the match in question, albeit he could have inadvertently done so. The cricket no-balls incidents did not lose Pakistan a match, but they were not betting on no-balls. This was merely an entry fee ‘taster’ – to demonstrate that the fixers had influence on the team.

  7. Raoul says:

    The penalty story is interesting. I see no problem with someone betting on themselves, and whilst there appears to be an element of “insider trading” about this, bookies should have access to reserve team scoring records (they are easily available on the web, or through the club). So all this highlights is that bookies are sometimes lazy in their research. As long as the info is available to all, it is fair.

    I agree that the no-balls thing was probably a “prover” to show that influence existed, with no doubt a huge bet to follow on something else.

    Le Tissier is a legend. His confession is silly and done to sell a book. Presumably video footage of the match exists – I suggest someone watches it to make sure it is actually true! Thing is, if the story is accurate then this was one somewhat unique player trying something out. It was not outside influences, which would be more of a concern as it would suggest something more widespread.

    What Le Tiss has failed to realise is that the criminal act is not murdering someone – it is trying to murder someone. The fact his plan failed in laughable fashion does not lessen his intent, and therefore his lack of ethics.

    I am wondering when Pete Rose will get a mention…..

  8. ejh says:

    Presumably video footage of the match exists

    I wouldn’t necessarily make that assumption – a lot of things were different in 1995.

  1. August 31, 2010

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    […] Why doesn’t match fixing scandals in football get the same scrutiny as in cricket? [twohundredpercent] […]

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