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Breaking News: Former Arsenal manager is being investigated for suspected betting activity

The National Crime Agency is looking into the player’s booking in Arsenal’s match against Leeds United.
Granit Xhaka’s yellow card against Leeds United is being investigated by the National Crime Agency, amid fears of a major scandal arising from anomalous betting activity on his booking. Despite his team’s 4-1 victory over the Peacocks, the Swiss midfielder was booked for timewasting.

The English Football Association announced in December 2021 that it would investigate Xhaka’s’mysterious booking’ in the Matchday 18 match. Martinelli’s brace, as well as goals from Saka and Smith Rowe, had already put Arsenal in command. However, referee Andre Marriner issued the Gunners their first booking of the game in the 86th minute for time wasting. Xhaka was the perpetrator, and his crime was delaying the taking of a free-kick.

The referee’s decision would typically be ignored, but an investigation was required when a substantial bet of almost £52,000 was placed on the Swizerland international being booked in the closing 10 minutes of the game. According to the Daily Mail, the amount was significantly more than what is generally spent on yellow cards, according to the bookmakers who reported the event to the FA.

Another interesting feature of the situation was that the odds of Xhaka being booked on the betting exchange were higher in the final 10 minutes than they were before start, adding to the suspicions. The investigation has been ongoing for six months, and the FA has now sent the case to the UK’s top organized crime agency in an attempt to bring the case to a close.

While there is no indication that Arsenal or Xhaka committed any crime, the disclosure raises serious issues about corruption and even criminality.