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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Life bans in Nigerian fixing scandal

The Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) has imposed life bans on players and match officials after two promotion play-off matches ended in surreal scorelines of 79-0 and 67-0, also banning the teams for ten years.

Mike Umeh described the results as
Chief Mike Umeh, the chairman of the NFF organising committee, had pledged a thorough investigation.

The decision was made less than a fortnight after indefinite suspensions had been handed out to Plateau United Feeders, Akurba FC, Police Machine and Babayaro FC in the wake of the results, which happened in promotion encounters for the Nigeria Nationwide League Division 3.

Plateau United Feeders beat Akuba FC 79-0, while Police Machine FC beat Bubayaro FC 67-0. Plateau United Feeders and Police Machine had been level on points before the games, but the extraordinary scorelines meant Plateau edged above Police Machine on goal difference.

The two matches were studied by an NFF committee, which ruled that the match officials involved should get life bans.

An NFF statement said: "The NFF has accepted the recommendations, and they will be communicated to the clubs, the state FAs and FIFA.

"We will publish all the names of players and officials with their photographs and details."

Speaking as the indefinite bans were announced on July 10, Chief Mike Umeh, the chairman of the NFF organising committee, said: "It is unacceptable. This is a scandal of huge proportions. The four teams involved are suspended immediately and indefinitely, pending further sanctions.

"We will investigate this matter thoroughly and get to the bottom of it."

The farcical results led the NFF's director of competitions, Dr Mohammed Sanusi, to issue assurances that those found guilty would be appropriately punished.

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