Saturday 2 April 2011

China's Golden Whistle Admits Accepting US$44,000 Bribe

Lu Jun, China's most prominent referee to have fallen from grace, has admitted to match-fixing corruption charges in China's domestic league during the 2003 season. This a year following his historic achievement in becoming the first Chinese from mainland China to officiate at the World Cup in the 2002 tournament hosted by South Korea and Japan.

Having previously been dubbed the "Golden Whistle", Lu Jun now joins the dodgy ranks of the "Black Whistles" that have tarnished the reputation of Chinese soccer (see here and here).

Referee Lu Jun during the 2002 World Cup group match between Poland and USA (pic from here)

Top soccer referee admits he got 350,000 yuan for fixing match (paywall)
Choi Chi-yuk
Mar 31, 2011

One of the mainland's top soccer referees confessed to fixing a match in the country's top league in return for 350,000 yuan (HK$415,450), state media reported yesterday.

Clad in orange prisoner's garb, former leading referee Lu Jun , who used to be a household name for millions of soccer fans across the nation, told China Central Television that under instructions from Zhang Jianqiang , the top football official overseeing referees in China at the time, he favoured Shanghai Shenhua in a derby match against Shanghai International in late 2003.

"He dropped me some hints that the Shenhua side might do me some favours if they managed to win the game," Lu said.

Lu showed one of International's players a red card, sending him from the pitch with 30 minutes left in the game. The sending off was controversial, with Shenhua eventually beating 10-man International 4-1, the report said. Lu later got 350,000 yuan in cash in a paper bag, with Zhang also getting the same amount.

Liu Xiaoxin , the newly appointed publisher of Soccer News, a Guangzhou-based newspaper, said yesterday that the match Lu fixed was one of the most important games in the top league that season.

"The Shanghai squads were the two strongest contenders for the League A title that year," he said.

"Maybe it was as a result of the fixing, maybe not, but the fact was that the Shenhua side lifted the trophy in the top league in 2003 and International finished second."

Liu said Lu had taken more money than other corrupt referees because he was prominent in his profession at that time. Dubbed "the golden whistler", Lu officiated in two matches at the 2002 World Cup, one in Japan and one in South Korea.

Two other referees, Huang Junjie and Zhou Weixin , allegedly rigged matches between Beijing Hyundai and Shenyang Ginde in 2004, and Guangzhou Pharmaceutical and Qingdao Zhongneng in 2009, the report said.

More news articles:

Details of soccer referee Lu Jun' s corruption case revealed (Xinhua)

Prestigious Chinese referee could face death penalty for match-fixing

Related Post:

CFA Chief says China Referees to Blame for Bad Reputation

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