The Nigera Football Federation decided to suspend four teams involved in games that finished with 79-0 and 67-0 scorelines. The winning club in each game was a lower league team on the verge of promotion that needed a better goal differential.
Plateau United Feeders topped Akurba FC, scoring seven goals in the first half and tacking on a meager 72 goals in the final half. Police Machine went up 6-0 on Babayaro FC in the first half before scoring another 61 goals in the second half. Keep in mind that each half of soccer is 45 minutes in length, so in both games the victors were scoring more than a goal a minute in the second half.
Let’s take a second to note that the two winning teams are named the Plateau United Feeders and Police Machine before moving on. Anddddd… we’re good.
The Nigeria Football Federation called the games a “mind-boggling show of shame” and is investigating the players on all four teams, the referees involved in the games, and the tournament coordinator for match-fixing. They said that “anyone found to have played some role in this despicable matter would be severely dealt with.”
I’m not sure how they handle these types of things in Nigeria, but when a soccer player refused to leave the field in Brazil after a red card he got stabbed to death by the referee. Match-fixing is a much higher offense, so I can only imagine what type of justice the NFF has in mind for these offenders.
When a sport that has lower-scoring matches like soccer or baseball has a game that’s abnormally high-scoring, you would typically say something like, “Oh, wow, that’s a football score right there.” But these two soccer matches were so high-scoring that even that wouldn’t be applicable.
I’ve never seen a more obvious attempt at cheating in sports. Did these really think they’d be able to sneak in a collective 133 second-half goals between the two games without any noticing?