A Colorado Rapids player has been removed from team activity pending an investigation into alleged links to “illegal sports betting,” MLS and the team announced Wednesday. Here’s what you should know:
- According to multiple reports, the player is Max Alves and is believed to have accepted payment for his acquisition. yellow card In a game against the LA Galaxy last season.
- A league statement also said a former MLS player was also suspected of involvement, with reports suggesting that player was former Dynamo forward Zeca.
- The league said it would “immediately launch” an investigation. “The integrity of the game is extremely important to the league and MLS takes these allegations and violations of the league’s integrity policy seriously,” MLS added.
- Intentionally getting a yellow card falls under a part of match-fixing called “spot match-fixing”. This means manipulating the specific occurrences on which bets are placed, such as the number of cards or corners.
Statement from Major League Soccer. pic.twitter.com/7oZKKRqitV
— MLS Communications (@MLS_PR) May 11, 2023
Alves, 21, was signed by the Rapids in 2022 from Brazilian club Flamengo as a key young man. He didn’t make much of a difference last year because he was adjusting to the league, but this season he won a spot in the starting lineup and earned recognition from manager Robin Fraser. He started seven games this year and scored his first MLS goal.
In the incident in question, Max reportedly received a yellow card less than two minutes after coming on as a substitute against the LA Galaxy.
Zeka, 28, will appear in 20 games for Houston in 2022, his only season in MLS. Houston rejected a deal option this winter and signed with Brazilian second division club EC Vitoria.
In 2021, MLS suspended Sporting KC midfielder Felipe Hernández following an investigation into allegations of illegal sports betting. Concerned for his safety due to gambling debts, he called the club and the league opened an investigation on 5 July 2015. He made a comeback ahead of the 2022 season. — Boggart
(Photo: C. Morgan Engel / USA Today)