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By ESPN Staff

Atalanta cleared of match fixing claims

ROME, July 24 (Reuters) - Atalanta have been cleared of claims they attempted to fix last season's two Serie A games against relegated Livorno, Italy's football federation (FIGC) said on its website (www.figc.it) on Thursday.

An FIGC disciplinary commission also exonerated Atalanta player Gian Paolo Bellini, saying there was no proof he was guilty of seeking to fix the results with former Livorno captain David Balleri.

Balleri, now with fourth-tier team Como, was found guilty of the less serious charge of 'sporting disloyalty' and banned for four months while Livorno were fined 25,000 euros ($39,170) for their former player's behaviour.

'I'll appeal. I don't deserve it,' Balleri was quoted as saying on La Gazzetta dello Sport's website (www.gazzetta.it).

FIGC prosecutors had asked for the two clubs to be given six-point deductions next season and for Bellini and Balleri to be banned for three years.

The commission said that after the second of the two matches, which Atalanta won 3-2 on May 4, Balleri insulted Bellini saying he had asked for a draw in the Dec. 23 fixture which ended 1-1.

The commission added Livorno's players had expected their already-safe opponents to be 'remissive' but nothing more serious could be proved.

Livorno brothers Emanuele and Antonio Filippini and team mate Alessandro Grandoni were cleared of charges of failing to inform the authorities about the alleged wrongdoing.

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