Inaugural ‘Together Against Match-Fixing’ tour draws to a close

The final whistle blew on the inaugural edition of the Together Against Match-Fixing programme in January, with workshops having been delivered to all 36 clubs currently playing in Germany’s top divisions Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2.

The partnership between Sportradar Integrity Services and the DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga (German Football League) was formally announced back in August 2018 and, following the final workshops of the tour in January, plans are already well underway for the 2019-20 season.

“The first edition of the tour was a complete success and together with the DFL, we are already excited about next season,” explains Maximilian Schmitt – Sportradar’s Senior Manager for Integrity Services (DACH).

“I really enjoyed discussing the topic in what was a very frank but open atmosphere. It was great to see how attentive and thoughtful the players were during the workshops.”

Plans are already afoot to make the sessions even more targeted and relevant to build on the positive reviews from staff, players, officials and the league itself.

Andrew Whittingham, Head of Education for Integrity Services, delivered workshops for English-speaking players and added: “There are always areas for improvement. Year on year we strive to include more relevant and specific case studies, to provide engaging and innovative ways of delivering the important educational messages around integrity and match-fixing prevention.”

The decision to offer workshops in German and English, with native speakers, was one made to ensure equal access for non-German speakers and improve engagement among players – a move that proved a positive one.

“It was great to chat with those more comfortable speaking in English,” Whittingham continues.

“This led to positive discussions not only between myself and the players but amongst the players themselves. They showed a clear commitment to, and interest in, the educational programme with plenty of players asking challenging and informed questions, which was obviously a real endorsement for the programme.”

The tour is scheduled to resume at the start of next season and, alongside the workshops, the DFL and Sportradar have also launched an e-learning tool, a mobile app and a webpage – the latter together with the DFB (German Football Association) – to help fight potential match-manipulation.

It all forms part of a strong partnership that stretches back to 2005, when the DFL and the DFB brought Sportradar on board to monitor and analyse all their betting-relevant matches and competitions, which amounts to over 7,000 per season.

For more information about the programme, visit www.together-against-match-fixing.com.

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