Bundesliga News

German police investigating Bellingham's match-fixing comments

By Rune Gjerulff

Jude Bellingham slammed referee Felix Zwayer after Borussia Dortmund's 2-3 loss to Bayern München. German police are now investigating his comments.

Jude Bellingham.
Jude Bellingham.

German police are investigating the controversial comments made by Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham following Saturday's 2-3 defeat at the hands of Bayern München in the Bundesliga, according to Bild and Sky.

Referee Felix Zwayer turned down a penalty appeal from Dortmund after Marco Reus went down in the box following a challenge from Lucas Hernandez. Later in the game, Bayern scored the winning goal from a penalty as Mats Hummels was adjudged to have handled the ball after a VAR check.

Bellingham, clearly frustrated by the refereeing decisions, hit out at Zwayer in an interview with Viaplay after the game, referring to the fact that the referee was handed a six-month ban by the German Football Association (DFB) after a match-fixing scandal in 2005.

"You give a referee, that has match fixed before, the biggest game in Germany, what do you expect? For me, it wasn't [a penalty]. He [Hummels] is not even looking at the ball and he's fighting to get it and it hits him. You can look at a lot of the decisions in the game," said Bellingham.

A spokesman for the Dortmund police has confirmed that a criminal complaint has been filed as part of the investigation into Bellingham's statements against Zwayer.

The case has been forwarded by the police to the Dortmund public prosecutor's office, with a decision on whether there will be criminal charges against Bellingham expected to be made later this week.

Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke and sporting director Michael Zorc have publicly backed Bellingham.

"His statement is not wrong, even if he doesn’t have to say it. Jude didn’t offend anyone, but merely stated a fact. I can’t imagine that he will suffer any consequences as a result," Watzke told Kicker.

Zorc explained:

"I fully support the player, it was a highly emotional situation, he was very disappointed and only stated facts that are well known. He didn’t insult anyone. Of course, you can discuss whether he needed to say it that way, but maybe you should also have some understanding for an 18-year-old who feels deprived of the rewards of his work in a highly emotional situation – and rightly so."

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