July 23 – With broadcast piracy issues increasingly concerning sports rights owners anxious to maintain their TV deals and value in an increasingly disrupted marketplace, the Premier League has won a further blocking order in the UK High Court forcing pirate streams to shut down.
July 11 – As the World Cup reaches its climax in Russia, the FifaGate scandal has reared its head again with The Imagina Group, parent of Spanish broadcaster MediaPro, agreeing to pay $24 million after its US-based affiliate US Imagina pleaded guilty to charges of corruption.
By Paul Nicholson
July 5 – Spain’s LaLiga is the latest football rights holder to condemn the on-going copyright theft by pirate satellite broadcaster BeoutQ that is transmitting sports content it does not own. Separately world tennis’s various governing bodies and major tournaments have combined to issue the strongest demands yet, calling for the “immediate closure” of the channel.
July 5 – A Swedish court has ordered an Arabic internet TV company to pay 210 million Swedish crowns in damages for distributing content including English Premier League soccer without permission.
July 2 – Imprisoned former FC Barcelona president Sandro Rosell is to stand trial for alleged money laundering related to television rights and sponsorship of the Brazilian national football team.
With the World Cup in full flow and attracting global attention, the temptation by some businesses who lack the badge of ‘Official Sponsor’ to promote their global brand will be great. But, however tempting, the stakes for those businesses, so-called “ambush marketers”, are high. By Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner
June 20 – The United World Cup 2026 bid might not be quite as united as its principals claim as US authorities pursue Mexican football legend and national team captain Rafael Márquez, 39, who in the past week has become only the third player ever to appear at five World Cups.
June 15 – On the day Portugal opened their World Cup campaign in Russia against Spain, their superstar player Cristiano Ronaldo has accepted a suspended prison sentence to settle his tax fraud case, and agreed to pay £16.4 million to the Spanish tax authorities.
By Paul Nicholson
June 11 – UEFA and FIFA’s failure to get any kind of control or governance over Greek football is reaching unprecedented levels even by their own woeful standards. The integrity of the game in Greece was hammered again with news that champion club AEK’s owner Dimitris Melissanidis is under investigation for accounting fraud.
June 7 – A Croatian court has sentenced the former boss of Dinamo Zagreb, Zdravko Mamic (pictured right with brother Zoran), to six-and-a-half years in prison for tax evasion and siphoning off profits from player transfers, allegedly including that of Luka Modric to Tottenham Hotspur and Mateo Kovacic to Inter.
June 6 – FIFA has filed a criminal complaint in Switzerland against the ticket website Viagogo on the eve of the World Cup as part of a crackdown on unauthorised sales.
June 4 – Eighteen months after the Swiss criminal investigation into corruption allegations over the awarding of the 2006 World Cup to Germany was broadened to include former FIFA general secretary Urs Linsi (pictured), he is now reported to be among four former leading administrators charged by German prosecutors with serious tax evasion.
By Mark Baber
May 24 – German prosecutors in Frankfurt have filed charges of tax evasion against former DFB Presidents Wolfgang Niersbach (pictured left) and Theo Zwanziger and the DFB Secretary General Horst R. Schmidt.
May 21 – Chelsea’s billionaire Russian owner Roman Abramovich, whose club won a distinctly unexciting FA Cup on Saturday to save their season, faced delays in renewing his UK visa and did not attend the game, according to reports.
May 9 – More than six months after a judge in Paraguay authorised the extradition to the United States of former Conmebol boss Nicolás Leoz, alleged to have been one of the masterminds in the FIFAGate corruption scandal but who has so far managed to escape the clutches of US prosecutors, now appears to be closer than ever to finally being brought to justice.