The Swedish Football Association (SvFF) has hit back at the country’s gambling regulatory body Spelinspektionen for not prohibiting licensed operators from offering betting on a domestic football club competition – despite its warning of some suspected match-fixing.
Last month, the SvFF revealed that it had received reports of match-fixing within Division 2 Södra Svealand, advising the Spelinspektionen to implement a complete ban on operators taking bets on the competition.
However, the Spelinspektionen has declined this request after saying that the Swedish Gaming Act does not support such prohibitions, adding that combat is in full flow against the manipulation of sporting results. The regulator has also said that it was working to develop regulations that will address the SvFF’s concerns.
A hit back has now come from the SvFF, with its general secretary Håkan Sjöstrand stating that the organisation does not agree with the regulator’s “narrow interpretation” of the Gaming Act.
Sjöstrand said: “It must be possible for the responsible authority to make quick decisions in more urgent situations of this kind, otherwise, this must be clarified in the legislation.”
It has been understood that the SvFF has written to a number of gambling operators in Sweden, where they have requested that they postpone any betting on the division. Svenska Spel has confirmed that it is no longer allowing betting, while Bethard, 888 and Unibet have indicated that they will also be following suit.
Sjöstrand added: “We hope that all serious companies will follow, despite the Spelinspektionen’s negative position. We cannot wait for the authority to finalise its regulations or to change the law.
“We are forced to devote considerable resources to monitoring and other measures.” Sjöstrand also urged authorities to join the organisation in the ‘fight’ against corruption in sport.”
In addition to this, the SvFF has committed to adopting enhanced measures in an attempt to safeguard Division 2 Södra Svealand from manipulation for the remainder of the season. This will include increased monitoring of matches and intensified monitoring of the gaming market to detect any deviations.