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Japan FA backs Halilhodzic

AFC World Cup qualifiers
By ESPN Staff

Premiership stars accused of betting on own clubs

Four Premiership footballers broke FA rules by betting on their own clubs last season, according to top public relations adviser Max Clifford.

He said he was approached to keep stories about the players betting hundreds of thousands of pounds out of the newspapers.

Part of the deal, including at least one England international, involved agreeing a visit to a hospice for terminally ill children.

Mr Clifford said he decided to speak out after he claimed the players had not kept their side of the bargain.

He told the Daily Express: 'The total staked was around £500,000 through an offshore account. I was called in to save their careers and keep it out of the newspapers.

'I was paid for my services, but the players also promised to visit a children's hospice and three months later I'm still waiting.

'I am appalled by the attitude of those players, and for me it typifies the greed in the game.'

Mr Clifford explained he was hired on a confidential basis and would not hand over any evidence to the FA.