Were Forest robbed in 1984?; around the world

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The Independent Online

Nottingham Forest's 1984 Uefa Cup semi-final defeat to the Belgian club Anderlecht is at the centre of a bribery probe.

Two Belgians have been charged with blackmail in connection with match- fixing allegations. Jean Elst and Rene Van Aeken were released yesterday, with certain conditions attached, pending the police investigation.

The police launched an enquiry into the allegations after Anderlecht said they had been blackmailed by the two men. One of the pair claimed to have acted as an intermediary to fix the second leg, which Anderlecht won 3-0 after losing the first leg 2-0. They offered their story, in return for about pounds 215,000, to the Brussels newspaper, Het Nieuwsblad.

Anderlecht's general manager, Michel Verschueren, has confirmed that the police have been asked to investigate the alleged blackmail attempt - but he denied the central allegation that the club used an intermediary to try to "buy" the game.

Their second-leg victory, after a disputed penalty given to them and a disallowed Forest goal, took Anderlecht to the final - which they lost to Tottenham.


The former Everton striker Daniel Amokachi is in trouble with his club Besiktas after they had to hire a private plane to get him back to Istanbul in time for a match.

The Nigerian arrived only half an hour before the match against their city rivals Fenerbahce, which Besiktas won 1-0. The club have fined Amokachi about pounds 5,000 for his late show - but he is refusing to pay.

"I don't believe I committed any crime," Amokachi said. "Punishment will not be a lesson to me, it will just annoy me." He had missed a flight in London after being delayed returning from Nigeria, where he had been visiting his sick mother. It cost Besiktas about pounds 11,000 to hire the plane.


About half of Bulgaria's 16 First Division clubs will be unable to play this weekend, when their league resumes after its winter break, because of the country's economic crisis.

"Seven or eight teams have asked us to help them financially," the Bulgarian Football Union's president, Ivan Slavkov, said. Bulgaria is suffering a severe petrol crisis, and the BFU is trying to ensure teams have fuel for their buses so that they can get to games.


Patrick Deckers, a midfielder with the Dutch Second Division side Eindhoven, has been sacked by his club for dropping his shorts and "flashing" at fans after being sent off against Helmond Sport on Monday.

"Showing one's genitals in public is forbidden by law, and is seen as disturbing public order," the club said.

Rupert Metcalf