Featured Matches
Previous
Manchester City
Liverpool
(1) 2
(3) 2
FT-Pens
Game Details
Bayern Munich
Guadalajara
1
0
LIVE HT
Game Details
AS Trencin
Hull City
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Mlada Boleslav
Lyon
1
4
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Real Sociedad
Aberdeen
2
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Shakhter Karagandy
Hajduk Split
4
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Astana 1964
AIK Solna
1
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Neftchi Baku PFC
Chikhura Sachkhere
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Omonia Nicosia
Metalurg
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
FK Astra Giurgiu
Liberec
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Ruch Chorzow
Esbjerg FB
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Dinamo Moscow
Hapoel Kiryat Shmona
1
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Elfsborg
FH Hafnarfjordur
4
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Karabükspor
Rosenborg
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Mlada Boleslav
Lyon
1
4
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
AS Trencin
Hull City
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Brommapojkarna
Torino
0
3
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
PSV Eindhoven
St. Pölten
1
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Dinamo Minsk
CFR Cluj-Napoca
1
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
IFK Goteborg
Rio Ave
0
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
FC Zorya Luhansk
Molde
1
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
BSC Young Boys
Ermis Aradippou
1
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
RNK Split
FC Chornomorets Odessa
2
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
S.V. Zulte Waregem
Shakhter Soligorsk
2
5
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Petrolul Ploiesti
Viktoria Plzen
1
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Víkingur Gøta
Rijeka
1
5
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Mainz
Asteras Tripolis
1
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Diosgyor VTK
Kuban Krasnodar
1
5
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Stjarnan
Lech Poznan
1
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
FK Sarajevo
Atromitos
1
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Real Sociedad
Aberdeen
2
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Club Brugge
Brøndby
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
St Johnstone
FC Spartak Trnava
1
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
SV Grödig Amateure
Zimbru Chisinau
1
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Bayern Munich
Guadalajara
1
0
LIVE HT
Game Details
Londrina
Santos FC
1
0
LIVE HT
Leg 1
Game Details
Coritiba FBC
Paysandu SC
12:00 AM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Unión Comercio
Sport Huancayo
3
0
FT
Game Details
Melgar
San Martin
2
1
FT
Game Details
Sporting Cristal
León de Huánuco
4
0
FT
Game Details
Sky Blue FC
Western New York Flash
1
0
FT
Game Details
Next
Apr 25, 2013

Did dictators fix World Cup matches?

ZURICH -- Soccer's biggest prize may have twice been won with the help of dictators fixing matches for the host team.

Argentina's triumph in 1978 and Italy's in 1934 were said to be influenced by military leaders seeking propaganda coups, delegates were told Thursday at a symposium titled "The Relevance and Impact of FIFA World Cups."

"It's the same old story: Sport and politics are brothers and sometimes sport is under the other brother," Italian writer Marco Impiglia told The Associated Press.

Impiglia presented a paper suggesting Benito Mussolini ensured favorable refereeing decisions, helping the Italian team win.

Raanan Rein, an Israeli professor of Latin American history, said he was "100 percent persuaded" that Argentina's military junta influenced a 6-0 win against Peru. The match is a notorious chapter of World Cup lore and ensured Argentina advanced to the final instead of great rival Brazil.

Still, Rein and Impiglia said their claims lack documentary proof.

The four-day gathering of academics and historians is studying the political, social and economic impact on nations that have hosted the biggest and most-watched sports event since the World Cup was first played in Uruguay in 1930.

FIFA's choice of Brazil, Russia and Qatar -- three countries with growing economies and diplomatic influence -- as the next hosts from 2014 to 2022 suggests soccer and politics will continue to mix.

"It tells me that in terms of the global presence of football since the 1930s, FIFA has made a big step forward," said conference co-organizer Stefan Rinke, a professor of Latin American history at Free University in Berlin.

Opening the conference on Wednesday, FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke acknowledged that working with democratically elected governments can complicate organizing tournaments that require billions of dollars of investment in stadiums, airports, roads and hotels.

Dictator-led hosts presented a different kind of challenge, delegates were told.

Rein said the generals who seized power in Argentina in 1976 needed a propaganda victory two years later to appease their people and a global community angered by the regime's often brutal treatment of opponents.

They collaborated with "at least one foreign government" to fix the Peru match, Rein said, as Argentina needed to win by four goals.

"According to many people I spoke with in Argentina ... there is in fact no question about it," said Rein, adding that many activists were conflicted by their affection for the players to speak out. "It not only stains the military regime but it also stains the national team, and they had a great national team. In many ways, they deserved to win the World Cup."

The junta fell in 1983, after a military defeat against Britain, and Rein speculated it could have gone sooner but for the extra-time victory in the '78 final against the Netherlands.

"Not winning the World Cup might have had somewhat similar consequences like being defeated in the Falklands, or Malvinas, islands in mid-1982," he said.

Mussolini described soccer as "unmanly," yet recognized its popularity and potential to create "a myth of a new Italy" when FIFA chose the 1934 host, Impiglia said.

"The fascist regime made a political abuse of the event," Impiglia said. "It was a questionable win and it raised many doubts at the time."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.