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Orlando Pirates react after video surfaces of players discussing betting

Orlando Pirates have been thrust into the spotlight after a video surfaced on social media featuring several of their players engaged in a conversation about betting on a match.

The video caused a stir for Pirates, capturing goalkeeper Sipho Chaine in conversation with teammates, who are not in the frame, about what seems to be a bet on a match, possibly involving Manchester United in the English Premier League.

The Soweto giants, known for their stringent adherence to regulations, have swiftly responded to the situation.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, 15 May 2024, Pirates clarified that while the video depicts a seemingly lighthearted exchange about a potential bet on an English Premier League match, no actual bets were placed.

ORLANDO PIRATES Responds to Player Betting Video

“The Club has noted a video circulating on social media involving two of our players discussing betting,” reads the statement.

“We would like to clarify that the players in the video did not place any bets,” “The video captured a light-hearted moment among teammates purporting to have placed a bet on an English Premiership match.

“As a Club, we are fully aware of the regulations regarding betting. Betting on any sport is strictly prohibited for any professional player. However, we have addressed the matter with the players involved, emphasising that even in jest, such discussions can have serious implications.

“The Club has reiterated the importance of adhering to betting regulations to avoid any potential long-term consequences.

“The players recognise their error in judgment and have since apologised. However, due to the seriousness of this matter, the Club has instituted its own internal investigation to ensure that no player is involved in any form of sports betting, as this would constitute a breach in the club handbook that all players are signatory to.

PSL Adheres to FIFA’s Player Betting Rules

The PSL doesn’t have its own specific regulations against player betting. However, they’ve confirmed to FARPost that they abide by FIFA’s rules on this issue.

FIFA’s Code of Ethics prohibits anyone under its jurisdiction, including players, referees, and intermediaries, from placing bets.

“All officials, referees, players, as well as match agents and intermediaries, are subject to the Code as follows:

  • “They are forbidden from participating in, either directly or indirectly, betting, gambling, lotteries or similar events or transactions related to football matches or competitions and/or any related football activities;
  • “They shall not have any interests, either directly or indirectly (through or in conjunction with third parties), in entities, companies, organisations, etc. that promote, broker, arrange or conduct betting, gambling, lotteries or similar events or transactions connected with football matches and competitions;
  • “Interests” include gaining any possible advantage for the persons bound by the Code themselves and/or related parties”

In addition under Article 26 of the FIFA Code of Ethics, engaging in direct or indirect betting can lead to an integrity investigation. These behaviours could result in a fine of approximately R2 million and a ban from football activities for up to three years.

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