Tuesday, 28 November 2006

Sculli handed eight month ban

Genoa striker Giuseppe Sculli has been banned for eight months after an investigation into a second division game in 2002.

Telephone interceptions involving Sculli discussing a match were published in the Italian media and the Lega Calcio's disciplinary commission handed down the ban on Tuesday to the former Italy Under-21's player.

The investigation focused on a Serie B match in June 2002 between Sculli's side at the time, Crotone, and Sicilian outfit Messina - a game that the Pelaritani won 2-1. The potential outcome of the match was discussed by Sculli during a series of telephone conversations which were intercepted.

The disciplinary commission did not find proof of match-fixing which could've handed Sculli a three and a half year ban, but he - who later played for Messina - was given the ban for "unsporting conduct".

Four other people investigated by the commission - Rocco Cotroneo, Leo Criaco, Nicola Salerno and Raffaele Vrenna - were all cleared of any wrongdoing.

Sculli began his career with Juventus but has never made a top-flight appearance for the club having been loaned out to various teams during the past six seasons.

The forward is the grandson of Giuseppe Morabito head of the 'Ndrangheta', the crime group in southern Italy that has taken over the drug smuggling primacy from the Sicilian Mafia. Morabito was arrested in a police raid in the Calabrian mountains in February 2004.

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