AN Institute player has been suspended by the club after admitting asking for a bet to be placed on his team to lose to Ballymena United on February 9.
Under the Irish FA’s betting rules players are not allowed to place a bet on any game involving their club.
“I know it was stupid. I have learned a hard lesson,” said a statement from the player issued by Institute who currently play their home games at Derry City’s Ryan McBride Brandywell stadium.
“I will accept whatever punishment comes my way and then do my utmost to restore the club’s faith in me.”
A screenshot of the player asking for the bet to be placed was circulated on social media last weekend.
Screenshots of a Facebook chat conversation appear to show the person asking a pal to make the bet on the Bet365 app because they don’t want to get “caught and f***ed then”.
Ballymena won the game at the Brandywell 2-1.
“The IFA have been informed [of the player’s admittance] by the club,” said club chairman Bill Anderson.
“We have suspended the player and will be working closely with both NIFL and the IFA in the coming days to facilitate their investigation of the matter.”
The first three IFA rules leave players in no doubt about which matches they can and cannot wager a bet:
* You are not allowed to place any bet on a game involving your club.
* You are not allowed to place any bet on a game in a competition (such as cup competitions or the league itself) in which your club plays;
* This includes competitions that your club is due to play in but has not yet started and competitions that your club has been knocked out of. It goes on to clarify that this also extends to bets placed via friends or other third parties.
“The reason the IFA has rules in this area is to ensure that in every match both teams and players are playing to the best of their ability and with a clear motivation to win, without any conflicting objectives for either club or any player or club official,” the rules state.
The Drumahoe side have enjoyed a largely positive return to the top flight this season.
They currently sit seventh in the table, although manager Paddy McLaughlin and captain Michael McCrudden both left the club earlier this month.