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Latics rocked by Montano bet-fix allegations

Reporter: Matthew Chambers
Date online: 09 December 2013

OLDHAM Athletic star Cristian Montano was arrested yesterday over allegations of match fixing.

The 21-year-old winger appears in a video in which he appears to say how he deliberately tried to get cautioned in the first half at Wolves in October.

He failed to do so and covert footage recorded for the Sun on Sunday shows him explaining himself to ex-Portsmouth defender and alleged fixer-in-chief Sam Sodje.

Montano has been suspended without pay by Latics as inquiries continue.

“From minute one I was hacking people down,” Montano said on the video. “People running past me and I would go clip. I run against one player and barged him.”

Montano, who also said he tried to get yellow-carded by swearing at referee Mark Haywood, eventually did get booked — in the second half.

The former West Ham player added that he would be prepared to try to get booked in the future. On his next start for Athletic, against Notts County on November 12, Montano was cautioned in the 27th minute.

Five more players were arrested in the gambling probe by the National Crime Agency. None of the others are understood to have Athletic links.

The whole episode is believed to have come as a huge shock to the club, which had no knowledge of the revelations until publication yesterday.

Montano, who signed for Athletic in August 2012, is injured and wasn’t at Boundary Park for the 1-1 FA Cup second round draw with Mansfield on Saturday.

In the same report, Sodje (34), currently without a club, claimed he was deliberately sent off for punching Jose Baxter twice in a game at Boundary Park in February to pocket £70,000.

That red card incident was described in the Chronicle at the time as “a moment of unabashed madness”.

Football League chief executive Shaun Harvey said: “We treat any allegations of criminal activity in our competitions with the utmost seriousness. We will be giving our full assistance to the police during their investigation.”

Athletic director Barry Owen said: “The future of the player cannot be established until we are notified of what is to occur with these investigations.”


has he been paid to fall over when he has the ball? no loss not a very good player to put it mildly

Even if found to be innocent would we be able to believe that any future playing incidents were genuine?

Without making any prejudicial comments, hopefully.

This is now the time for everyone to rally round and show just what we as a club are capable of, starting tomorrow night against Chesterfield.

This very unpleasant situation and how it's handled will go a long way to proving to the doubters just how good a Club Chairman and Co-Directors we have, a highly intelligent and forward thinking Manager with his players who should set out to prove that we don't need this sort of publicity now or ever.

If proved I hope the authorities throw the book at him. It shows no respect for the club, team mates or the people who pay hard-earned money to support the team. .

The bookies who run markets where you can bet on the number of red/yellow cards shown in a game should also be held to account. It's ridiculous and is wide open to abuse.

I have seen the undercover filming on TV as no doubt other fans have and I can't see him ever playing football again. He was a talented player for our division and started out this term on top form I had great expectation of him to become a kingpin in the side

His alleged actions which were bared to the public eye via a 'sting' operation will garner not one drop of pity from anybody. Young he might be but his his verbal reaction to his failure to obtain a 'yellow' in the recent Wolves game speaks volumes. Thankfully, Montano has for the most part been on the fringes of the Athletic squad due to injuries so his loss(as a player)will not harm Athletic too much, what about him?

These players who match fix, should be fines and not allowed to play again for any team, as they show no respect for the club from whom they play for.
It goes to show that these overpaid players will do anything for money.

If Montano is found guilty of fixing, the Club should sue him for breach of contract, and bringing the Club into dispute. The Club should seek damages equivalent to the transfer fee paid to West Ham Utd plus his salary paid to date. That will send a message out to other people who are tempted to cheat Football Clubs and their fans.


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