- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 7, 2015

ROME (AP) - Italy coach Antonio Conte was among 104 people whom a prosecutor requested Tuesday be brought to trial on match-fixing charges in a wide-ranging case that allegedly has its roots in Singapore.

Cremona prosecutor Roberto Di Martino made the expected requests in a case that has stretched back nearly five years.

Conte is accused of committing sports fraud when he coached Siena in 2010-11.

If indicted, Conte will likely request a fast-track trial in an attempt to clear himself before next year’s European Championship.

“It’s not going to be easy to have a trial before then,” Di Martino told The Associated Press.

Conte, who has denied wrongdoing, already served a four-month sports ban during the 2012-13 season when he was with Juventus.

Trial requests were also made for current and former Lazio captains Stefano Mauri and Giuseppe Signori, respectively. Former Atalanta captain Cristiano Doni and ex-Atalanta and current Udinese coach Stefano Colantuono are also facing possible trials.

Prosecutors have detailed an extensive match-fixing ring stretching as far as Singapore and South America that was allegedly in operation for more than 10 years.

About 60 matches in the top three divisions remain under investigation - down from about 200 games at the start of the inquiry.

Di Martino said he expects a judge to confirm the requests in “December or January.”

Italian football federation president Carlo Tavecchio and Olympic committee president Giovanni Malago have both said that Conte should keep his job unless found guilty.

The match under investigation involving Conte is Siena’s 1-0 away win at Albinoleffe in May 2011. Siena’s 2-2 draw at Novara, also in May 2011, was dropped from the inquiry. Siena finished second in Serie B in 2011 and was promoted to the top division.

Players have told prosecutors that Conte was aware of the match-fixing and did nothing to intervene.

On the document requesting a trial for Conte, the prosecutor wrote that a coach’s job is “to safeguard the moral conduct of the players.”

Conte was also investigated for match-fixing when he coached Bari from 2007 to 2009, and the southern club was penalized a point during the 2013-14 season.

After leading Juventus to three straight Serie A titles, Conte became Italy’s coach a year ago. He replaced Cesare Prandelli after the Azzurri’s first-round exit from the World Cup.

Trial requests are also “likely” for Italian tennis players Daniele Bracciali and Potito Starace on charges of criminal association, Di Martino said.

The football fixing inquiry led Cremona prosecutors to also investigate Bracciali and occasional doubles partner Starace using intercepted phone and Internet conversations.

In a July 2007 conversation between Bracciali and an accountant who was arrested in 2011, Bracciali discussed arranging a match in Newport, Rhode Island, against American player Scoville Jenkins.

In 2011, an owner of a betting parlor who was later arrested was heard saying Starace agreed to sell the final of a tournament in Casablanca.

Both Bracciali and Starace have denied wrongdoing.


This story has corrected the Siena match under investigation to Albinoleffe-Siena instead of Novara-Siena.


Andrew Dampf can be followed at www.twitter.com/asdampf

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