Belgian players face suspensions for betting on club matches

Jupiler Pro League

November 22 – The Belgian FA, the KBVB, is set to punish Olivier Deschacht (Anderlecht), Knowledge Musona (Ostende), Tuur Dierckx (Antwerp) and Laurent Henkinet (Beveren), for betting on Belgian club matches.

Deschacht and his fellow players face a fine of up to €500 and a maximum suspension of eight match days. Earlier this season the four players were discovered to have gambled on matches involving their own club. Beveren released Henkinet as a result.

Last weekend, it emerged that Deschacht had a bookmaker account that was used three times to bet on Anderlecht losing different games. Deschacht played 56 minutes in one of those matches – versus Benfica in the Champions League in 2013. The Anderlecht defender maintains that his brother made the bet.

The KBVB is waiting for the investigation of the Gambling Commission and the public prosecutor before proceeding and implementing any sanctions.

Following the betting revelations the Pro League considered an action plan to curb betting in Belgian football at their general meeting. “The action plan is about uniform regulations, prevention and agreements with the industry,” said CEO of the Pro League Ludwig Sneyers.

However, betting among players is widespread in the Belgian game. The FA and the Pro League have partnerships with betting companies. On pay TV betting advertisements are commonplace before and during live broadcasts of matches. The KBVB and the Pro League has so far failed to take any decisive action.

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