A friendly against the United States in 2010 and a 5-0 loss to Mexico to open the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup are among four events under investigation for match-fixing by the Federación Salvadoreña de Fútbol. The El Salvadorian governing body suspended 22 players for 30 days on Wednesday, pending further investigation.
El Gráfico, a sports-focused daily newspaper in El Salvador, used the 22 players’ headshots on its haunting cover page on Thursday (pictured) as part of its reports on the scandal. The paper also listed the names of all players suspended:
Luis Anaya, Osael Romero, Ramón Sánchez, Christian Castillo, Eliseo Quintanilla, Miguel Granadino, Miguel Montes, Dagoberto Portillo, Rodolfo Zelaya, Víctor Turcios, Carlos Romeo Monteagudo, Dennis Alas, Alfredo Pacheco, Mardoqueo Henríquez, Marvin González, Carlos Carillo, Darwin Bonilla, Rodrigo Alejandro Martínez, Reynaldo Hernández, Ramón Flores, Benji Villalobos, Emerson Umaña
The other two matches in question are a 1-0 friendly loss to Major League Soccer club D.C. United in 2010 and a 3-0 away loss to Paraguay on Feb. 6, 2013. Only two of the players under investigation play overseas, Víctor Turcios and Ramón Sánchez, and it will be up to FIFA to enforce FESFUT’s suspension, El Gráfico reported.
Attempts to influence the outcome of El Salvador under-20 national team matches in the 2013 FIFA U20 World Cup, in which it won one game and lost two, are also part of the investigation, FESFUT president Carlos Méndez said. In conjunction with the attorney general’s office, the federation should have more to report in the coming days.
CONCACAF released a full statement on Thursday supporting the investigation and the federation’s efforts to eradicate match-fixing. In part, it reads:
CONCACAF is deeply saddened by these claims of match manipulation within the football community. The Confederation fully supports the Football Federation of El Salvador and other pertinent organizations involved in the above mentioned investigation and hopes for a fair due process in order to determine the validity of these accusations.