Thousands of people were affected by betting on a Brazilian match that simply didn’t happen. The case is being investigated in the county and it might have a big criminal organization involved.
A MILLION EUROS ON MATCH THAT DIDN’T EXIST!
Brazil is still suffering with the paralyation of their leagues due to the impact of the coronavirus in the country. But those that believe there haven’t been any football matches since the start of the pandemic are wrong.
On March 25th of this year, more than 200 bookmakers from outside of Brazil offered bets on a friendly match between Andraus, from Paraná, and Serrano, from Paraíba. Both teams play in the second division of their respective states. Well, this match moved more than a million euros in bets.
That’s a very high betting volume, if compared to the average since the paralyzation reached Brazil. That drew the attention of the authorities, that were willing to investigate the case. According to an article by Rede Globo, from Brazil, monitoring experts from sports betting websites all over the world noted the changes on the betting volume of this match, that doesn’t seem to have taken place in fact.
The representatives of Andraus and Grêmio Serrano were sought by the production, but they didn’t want to give any interviews. Their lawyers were directed to clarify things and they’ve offered different arguments, causing even more doubt regarding the veracity of this match.
Andraus’ owner, the businessman Nadim Andraus has an history of fights near the pitch and is a suspect of match fixing. Nadim wasn’t found to make a statement, but the club’s lawyer Marluz Dalledone insists that the match actually happened.
Serrano’s president also didn’t want to give an interview and he also indicated a lawyer, Lucas Bezerra, that represents the club. According to Bezerra’s version, Serrano didn’t travel to Paraná to play this match, and yes, they played with local players that don’t belong to the club.
The justification of Serrano’s lawyer doesn’t match the one given by Andraus’ lawyer, that said this match had the objective of assessing if any professional player from Serrano’s roster had enough quality to be hired by the club from Paraná. Besides the differences on the statements, there isn’t any indication that suggests the match has actually happened. There is not promotion for the match from the clubs, no fan posts about the match or even an article on sports’ websites that could cover the event.
THE SEVERAL STEPS OF THE GHOST MATCH
TV Globo’s report interviewed Matias Mendez, integrity analyst on an Uruguayan company that supervises the matches of several betting websites. According to Matias Mendez, the match between Andraus Brasil and Grêmio Serrano had unusual activity, which raised the doubt regarding the veracity of the encounter. During the first half, Andraus was leading, which caused the odds of the encounter to drop for them.
At the end of the 1st half, Serrano tied the match, going into half-time with a 1-1. According to Matias, the betting volume during the first half was “normal for the match in question. However, the betting volume increased absurdly in the 2nd half. A very high volume of unusual bets, alongside with Serano’s victory, despite being the underdogs, which raised the suspicions of match fixing even more.
Essa matéria do “Jogo fantasma”que está aparecendo agora no #Fantastico não me espanta…Eu já vi Time ganhar série B e reivindicar título da série A,Time sem Mundial querendo arrumar um fantasma de 51 e time do bairro da zona sul,querendo ganhar 3 mundiais no meio da pandemia🤷🏾♂️
— RICK OTTO PATAMAR🔴⚫️ ᶜʳᶠ (@HENRIQUEALBERT5) May 18, 2020
Matias Mendez still says that the numbers, the stats provided, don’t give a logic impression to justify the substantial increase of betting during the 2nd half of the match, and especially the fact people were betting on the visiting side. The president of the Paraná’s football association Hélio Cury was sought by the report, to acquire more information about the match.
Cury was categorical in saying that there wasn’t any match at all, because all activites had been suspended. The president of Paraíba’s football association, Michelle Ramalho, said she didn’t know anything about the event. In fact, she supports the investigation and punishment of the involved, in case the accusations are confirmed.
WHO WINS OR LOSES WITH THIS?
The “ghost matches” are a huge problem for bookmakers. Recently, in Ukraine, there was a case where criminal organizations utilized the name of weaker teams of the country in order to abuse this kind of illegal gambling.
In general, the bettors are the ones that tend to lose, since besides investing their money on matches that don’t exist, they can still be blacklisted, due to those criminal activities.