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By ESPN Staff

FIFA extends Korean match-fixing bans

FIFA has extended the match-fixing sanctions on 41 players in South Korea to worldwide lifetime bans.

The players were suspended by the K-League and Football Association following an investigation dating back to the summer of 2011 when more than 50 players and coaches in the K-League were indicted for accepting money to fix matches.

A FIFA statement read: "All 41 players have been sanctioned with a lifetime ban from all football activity by the K-League and the Korea Football Association's disciplinary committees. The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has extended the sanctions to have worldwide effect."

Around half the players involved have, however, been offered hope of one day returning to football after coming forward during a voluntary reporting period.

The statement continued: "However, 21 players who turned themselves in during the voluntary reporting period, expressing their grave regret about their involvement in match-fixing, have been offered the possibility of returning to football after a probation period of between two and five years. This includes carrying out periods of community service ranging from 200 to 500 hours."

The voluntary probation period would require a player to inform the K-League of his wish to return to football, and then commit himself to a community service involving coaching for local clubs, support for disability football or support for anti-match-fixing activities.

Information from the Press Association and Associated Press was used in this report.

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