Seven more players from Football League clubs based in the north west of England have been arrested in connection with alleged spot-fixing and another six rearrested over the claims, it emerged last night.
The 13 footballers, aged between 18 and 30, are being interviewed at police stations across the country after they were held as part of an investigation into alleged bribery and money laundering, the National Crime Agency said.
In December the original six suspects were arrested as part of the inquiry, prompted by information passed on by the Sun on Sunday, and were bailed to return on April 8.
The tabloid reported that an undercover investigator met former Portsmouth player Sam Sodje, who allegedly said he could arrange for footballers in the Championship to get themselves a yellow card in return for tens of thousands of pounds.
The 34-year-old also claimed he could rig Premier League games and even said he was preparing to fix matches at next year’s World Cup in Brazil, the newspaper reported.
It was also claimed that Oldham Athletic player Cristian Montano failed to get a yellow card in return for money in a match against Wolverhampton Wanderers on October 22 and offered to take part in another rigging incident. Blackburn striker DJ Campbell was confirmed to be one of the six players who were arrested in December.
The Football Association said it was aware of the arrests.