Bantams boss Phil Parkinson: My shock at football 'fix' probe

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Sam, pictured, and  Akpo Sodje played under Phil Parkinson at Charlton Sam, pictured, and Akpo Sodje played under Phil Parkinson at Charlton

Phil Parkinson has reacted with disgust to the growing football corruption scandal after two of his former players were among those arrested.

The Bantams chief admits he has been stunned as news continues to emerge of suspected spot-fixing within the game.

Sam Sodje, who was filmed by a national newspaper claiming he was paid £70,000 for deliberately getting sent off in a game, and his brother Akpo both played under Parkinson for Charlton. They have been bailed until April.

Parkinson said: “I think it’s terrible. English football is renowned around the world for its integrity “I’ve got to say that in all my time in the game as both a manager and player I’ve never suspected it. I could never believe that any player would go out there deliberately to do something like that.

“Hopefully these are isolated incidents but it is still very disappointing. It comes down to pure greed from the individual.”

Parkinson brought Sam Sodje to the Valley from Reading in September 2009. The centre half made 29 appearances during a 14-month stay.

He was also sent off twice, including a Boxing Day game against Swindon when Charlton were reduced to nine men before half-time but still fought back to force a 2-2 draw.

Akpo Sodje, currently playing for Tranmere, was signed two months after his brother. He was mainly used as a substitute.

Parkinson added: “Obviously Sam’s been caught on video and whatever happens it does not look good.

“Other people have been arrested accordingly and I just hope that the matter is cleared up as quickly as possible because this is not good for the game.”

Non-league player Michael Boateng, who had a pre-season trial with City in 2012, was arrested last week in a separate investigation and charged with conspiracy to defraud.

Former Premier League striker Delroy Facey, who has recently been playing for Bradford-based Albion Sports, was also arrested.

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