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Match-fixer denies predicting outcome of World Cup match

RIO DE JANEIRO -- A convicted match-fixer denied a report in a German magazine Tuesday that he predicted the result and details of a World Cup soccer match.

Cameroon's soccer federation said it was investigating the report in der Spiegel magazine that Wilson Raj Perumal accurately predicted in an online chat with one of its journalists that Cameroon would lose 4-0 to Croatia and would have a player sent off in the first half.

And that is exactly what happened in the June 18 match. Cameroon midfielder Alex Song was sent off before halftime for striking Croatia striker Mario Mandzukic in the back.

Der Spiegel's claims rang alarm bells because Perumal is the best-known match-fixer in soccer. He was convicted of fixing matches in Finland and suspected of fixing other games in Africa and involving African teams. He also isn't averse to self-publicity, having recently published memoirs with two journalists as co-authors.

Perumal denied having predicted the outcome.

“The Facebook chat with the Der Spiegel journalist took place a few days after the match - June 21st, as confirmed by my Facebook log,” his statement said.

“At no time did I make reference to four goals being scored or to a red card being issued. At no time did I suggest that I had any way of corroborating or substantiating what was meant to be an educated guess based on my extensive match-fixing experience. Last but not least: at no time was I informed by the Der Spiegel journalist that our chat was going to end up in the German publication.”

“I am shocked and amazed that a respected magazine such as Der Spiegel would go so far as to fabricate statements by yours truly with the visible aim of stirring the row over match-fixing,” he said. “I apologize to the Cameroon FA and to its fans if I inadvertently offended them; it was not my intention. I strongly believe that Der Spiegel should also do the same since they placed words in my mouth that I did not utter.”

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Referee Pedro Proenca from Portugal gives a red card to Cameroon's Alex Song during the Group A World Cup soccer match between Cameroon and Croatia at the Arena da Amazonia in ...

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