Five Tarxien Rainbows players are being investigated in a new case of possible bribery and corruption. TVM Sport has reported that the Malta Football Association along with the Police Force has launched an investigation into four Maltese players and a foreign player in a new scandal that could rock the Maltese football club.
The allegations surfaced after their 3-0 loss to BOV Premier League champions Hibernians on the 26th of November. Franz Tabone, the Integrity Officer at the MFA, confirmed that they had begun investigations with the police.
The investigations were sparked after a person came forward with information pinning the Maltese players to bribes and illicit payments.
It is not yet known if the allegations are limited to just these five players, and indeed if it’s just the Tarxien Rainbows that are implicated.
Players for the team found out about the allegations in an impromptu dressing room meeting, were they were informed that players among them could be involved in this new case of bribery.
The evidence of the alleged bribery hasn’t been made public yet, and it is believed only the MFA and the police hold the evidence proving the Tarxien Rainbows players involvement.
For their part, the Tarxien Rainbows have confirmed that their players are under investigation, and the Vice President of the club Edward Calleja said that the club was now on “stand-by”, awaiting further instructions from the MFA or the Maltese police force since they couldn’t handle the situation by themselves.
However, he did defend the club, saying that “the club is a victim of this situation.”
Maltese football has long been suffering from allegations of corruption and bribery, with many players found guilty and being banned from playing the game professionally in Malta after being investigated.
Sometimes, even officials have had to be reprimanded, and there have been cases of clubs being fined or relegated to a lower league due to corrupt practices, even recently.
The BBC released a short documentary looking into corruption in Maltese football last month, and the Maltese national coach Tom Saintfelt has even pointed to things like low wages as the reason for corruption allegations being rife in Maltese football