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Zambia U20s showing fruits of new philosophy

Zambia
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By ESPN Staff

UEFA to investigate Polish 'bribe' claim

WARSAW, Nov 16 (Reuters) - European football's governing body UEFA has begun an inquiry into reports that a Polish player was offered a bribe to fix the Euro 2008 qualifier with Belgium, Poland's football association said on Thursday.

The Polish FA said they had received a request from UEFA's disciplinary committee for more details on comments by defender Jacek Bak, who told newspapers he was offered money to influence Wednesday's match in Brussels. Poland won the game 1-0.

'UEFA has asked to talk to the player to establish more details of the situation he talked to the media about after Wednesday's match,' the FA said in a statement on its website.

The statement came after the Belgian FA urged UEFA to look into Bak's comments. UEFA was unavailable for comment.

'We are asking UEFA to start an investigation, primarily as we don't have enough information. We just have some reports in the newspapers,' a Belgian FA spokesman said.

Citing unnamed sources, tabloid daily Fakt reported Bak had been offered 10,000 euros ($12,810) to concede a penalty.

'I received a telephone call proposing that I fix the match,' four papers reported Bak as saying after his team's 1-0 win. 'I do not want to say anything more about this.'

The world of soccer has been rocked by a series of match-fixing scandals in the past couple of years, most notably in Italy's top flight which resulted in Juventus being stripped of two titles and demoted to the second division.

Bak, who plays his club football in Qatar, was not available for comment.

'The Polish football association will make efforts to ensure this issue is cleared up as fast as possible,' the Polish FA's statement said.

'The association's head has asked its disciplinary committee to verify the press reports on this situation and gather documents needed to take further legal steps.' It gave no more details.

After Wednesday's victory, Poland stand third in Group A, level on 10 points with Serbia and one point behind leaders Finland. Belgium are fifth with seven points.