FIFA's departing head of security says fight against match fixing will continue
Australian Chris Eaton leaving world football's governing body
Eaton says situation surrounding illegal gambling in sport is critical
A concentrated effort by governments needed to tackle problem, he says
FIFA’s departing head of security has pledged that the governing body of world soccer will continue the global fight against match fixing in his absence.
Australian Chris Eaton recently launched a renewed drive on behalf of FIFA to battle the multi-billion dollar trade in illegal betting, driven by organized crime groups.
But on Friday FIFA announced Eaton would be leaving in May to become director of sport integrity for the Qatar-based International Center for Sport Security.
Eaton told CNN World Sport that it was imperative governments work together to tackle the growing trend of illegal betting syndicates altering the outcomes of football matches across the globe.
He said although he was leaving, FIFA’s commitment to the issue would not be diluted. “The fight (against match fixing) will not stop. It won’t stop in football, it won’t stop generally.
“My job in this new sphere is bigger and covers more sports than football but the fight in football will continue without doubt.”
Eaton, who worked for international policing organization Interpol before joining FIFA, said the campaign against match fixing was at a critical stage.
He added: “The main challenge is to somehow break this nexus between organized crime and international gambling that is illegal.
“The South East Asian international gambling we’ve discussed before is of enormous quantity and gives a great temptation to trans-national organized crime and established criminal organizations.
“This has to be attacked by governments and by a concerted and collective effort of all law enforcement around the world.”
Eaton said his new role at ICSS would help provide support to numerous governments, sporting bodies and even bookmakers.
The Australian said FIFA were currently searching for someone to replace him and that president Sepp Blatter would keep the illegal gambling issue at the top of his agenda.
“I believe that FIFA has a few troubles at the moment, we all know that, but I’m certain they’ll come back to the front foot on this and that president Blatter will be charging down the line and pushing his anti match fixing message,” he said.