top of page

As a Match-fixing is a serious matter, likely to be a confidential investigation in the months to follow, please consider the following below information as critical to an accurate and informed public discussion. 

April 2, 2024

John Textor identifies specific Manipulated Games and Submission of Evidence to Prosecutors; Praises Brasil Senate Commission for Leadership in Fight against Corruption

To the Supporters of the Glorious Botafogo and to all who love football in Brasil:


As we look to embark upon a new Brasileirão in 2024, it is important that I provide an update regarding claims of corruption and match manipulation, especially as we all hope the problems and ‘bad actors’ of the past do not carry-over into the future.  The Senate in Brasil has made the very wise decision to fully investigate such claims, made by myself and others, and I believe all people in Brasil can be proud of this leadership, as I am not aware of any other major country that has shown such leadership in confronting the scourge of corruption in world football.


As I provide this update, I am mindful that my efforts seem to be at odds with both the President of the CBF, based on the maintenance of a previously filed lawsuit, and the President of Palmeiras, who seems to threaten a lawsuit every time I mention an obvious truth (that match manipulation is a continuing concern). I do find this latter fact ironic, in that the leaders of both institutions recently announced a campaign against match manipulation from the pitch of Wembley, only two weeks ago. So it would seem as if it is easier to point fingers, than to look in the mirror…but such irony is irrelevant…because corruption is everyone’s’s truly a global problem.


What’s next?


As we think about the recent announcement of the anti-corruption task force announced at Wembley Stadium, it must be said that Match Manipulation will not end at the hands of the Palmeiras President whose team appears to be the principal beneficiary of championship-altering manipulation in 2023. It will also not end if the CBF President invites the “Fox into the Chicken House”, to lead this task force, while choosing to litigate against the Botafogo team owner that is surely the most committed to, and the most capable of, the introduction of modern technologies that are capable of eviscerating traditional methods of match manipulation.


To be clear, I have 100% proof that Match-fixing has materially impacted the results of the Serie A Brasilierao campaign in each of the last two years, 2022 and 2023 – and in the case of 2023, the impacts of Match-fixing did in fact install Palmeiras as an un-deserving champion, over Botafogo, whose record-setting winning campaign was surely the most harmed by corrupt practices. I have never argued that Palmeiras itself, or its President, is responsible for this match manipulation. In fact, in my much watched protest against corruption last November, I made clear that I knew the great ‘players of Palmeiras did not want to win this way’. I am however arguing, with great conviction, that the championship ambitions of Palmeiras have benefited from this corruption.


For the purposes of this simple summary, I decided to submit only two games (of many) for prosecutorial review…one game (for each of 2022 and 2023) that was ‘100%’ confirmed, by leading experts and artificial intelligence, as Match Manipulation


  • Palmeiras vs Fortaleza (November 2, 2022), a 4-0 win for Palmeiras was MANIPULATED .


  • The CBF (and judicial authorities in Brasil) received notification by two separate emails during the afternoon of May 16, 2023, alerting such governing authorities of obvious match manipulation that altered the result of the above game, thereby altering the outcome of the 2022 Brasileirão itself.


  • The November 2022 Palmeiras – Fortaleza game was, according to leading experts and artificial intelligence, manipulated by at least four Fortaleza players. Several other players did exhibit abnormal deviations in key goal scoring situations, though only four players were judged to have exceeded thresholds that would establish clear and convincing evidence of match manipulation. It should be clear that the evidence does not establish motive, nor does it suggest that any club or any party was responsible for the manipulation, other than the specific players identified.


  • It should be noted that the lack of response from the CBF and others should certainly be considered a contributing factor to the corruption that would come in the 2023 Brasileirão.  The question must be asked…would the greatest ‘first half’ championship performance, in the history of Brasil, have become the ‘greatest collapse in the history of world football’, if the CBF had chosen act on clear indications of match manipulation that could have been confirmed as early as May 2023?


  • Palmeiras vs São Paulo, (October 25, 2023), a 5-0 win for Palmeiras, which was the beginning of a seemingly impossible (and now historic) over-taking of a Botafogo team that has just set an all-time record of wins ‘points’ in the first half of a Brasileirão, after 14 wins out of 17 games played, was MANIPULATED.


  • The October 2023 Palmeiras – São Paulo game was, according to leading experts and artificial intelligence, manipulated by at least five (5) São Paulo players. A total of seven (7) players did exhibit abnormal deviations in key goal scoring situations, though only five (5) players were judged to have exceeded thresholds that would establish clear and convincing evidence of match manipulation. It should be clear that the evidence does not establish motive, nor does it suggest that any club or any party was responsible for the manipulation, other than the specific players identified.


  • Match-fix Level II report that would, after completion of Match-fix Level III, prove match manipulation in the Palmeiras-São Paulo game above was provided to the STJD on in late 2023, though the STJD made clear their decision not to investigate further.  Names of accused individuals were, and should always be, redacted and not shown to a ‘sport court’. Such evidence should only be presented to constitutionally appointed prosecutors and government investigators. I have no intention of putting such accused individuals in harm’s way before they can act to defend themselves and to protect themselves.



I have already taken steps to provide comprehensive evidence relating to the above matches, and other matches, to a prosecutor of competent jurisdiction, to include evidence of a sequence of manipulations that devastated the 2023 championship. In addition to on-field bad actors (generally players), I am also prepared to demonstrate certain combinations of individuals, when acting together as Match Referee and Video Assistant Referee, that have clearly presided over match manipulation games, while also delivering devasting arbitration errors that secured manipulated results.


Shoot the Messenger?


It is long past time for the persecution of the Sport Court to stop being used, within the CBF, to suppress free speech and intimidate whistleblowers. The fact that I, as a club owner invited by the legislature, have been suspended for any amount of time (let alone for an entire year), unable to even attend games in the stands, simply for calling attention to obvious match-fixing, is embarrassing for Brasil.  The SAF Law has the potential to bring billions of foreign dollars into Brasil, for the benefit of every community, yet the legislature that invited me to Brasil stands on the sidelines as its first ‘test case’ is persecuted by a non-judicial body that will surely be the death of the foreign participation in the SAF program. 


Our technology is only capable of proving ‘how’ a match was manipulated, but only constitutionally appointed prosecutors can tell you ‘why’.  Only they have access to potent investigative tools that can implicate other off-the-pitch parties that may be involved in, or even responsible for, the unfortunate traditions of match manipulation.


Please remember, I was invited by the wisdom of the legislature of Brazil to bring opportunity and change to football in Brazil, for the benefit of all of Brazil. I was welcomed by leaders of the great clubs in Brazil onto the board of LIBRA, where I came to admire Ms. Pereira, among many others. I am deeply saddened to learn what I have learned, though I really have no choice (based on what I have learned) to persevere in this fight against corruption in our game.


An Opportunity for Brasil to Lead Again


I am mindful of the painful and positive change that will come to the beautiful game of football in Brazil…but for those of you that refuse to acknowledge the obvious corruption that has become pervasive in our game, please understand my actions to be the obvious result of the SAF law and my invitation to Brazil. 


I did not knowingly come to Brazil to be a disruptor, or to fight corruption, but that is how I have found myself. I have the mind, the skills and the knowledge to bring the future to Brazil…and that is now my mission.

I am a futurist. I am a believer in the digital domain. Through a long life of success and failure, I developed a brain that cannot ignore the major problems in society that are so easily solved by rapidly evolving tools of technology and, now, the first practical applications of artificial intelligence. If you don’t want change in Brazil, then don’t invite someone whose most successful company began under the name “Evolution A.I.”  


The SAF law, I believe, will be wonderful for Brazil. Ronaldo and I were the first to embrace this law as we fought to save the legendary clubs of Cruzeiro and Botafogo – and I know we were both proud to see others follow in support of the great clubs of Vasco, Bahia, and Coritiba.  The SAF law will bring new perspectives to combine with wisdom and experience and, working together, Brasil can truly re-emerge as a leader in world football.


This is current episode of corruption is not an embarrassment for Brasil. This is a great moment for Brasil – an opportunity to lead again. Beginning with the SAF Law, and continuing with the Senate’s review of our technology and their decision to open a full investigation, Brasil is now leading the world in the organized effort to end match-fixing, and Brasil’s example will once again be followed by the entire football world.


If you have the ‘will’, we have the technology. The old craftmanship of match-fixing is no match for computer vision and Artificial Intelligence. Soon, every corrupt actor on and off the field of play, will know that there exists an ‘eye in the sky’, powered by a machine, that sees all. 


Corruption in football will not end, and the bad actors will always look for new ways to attack the integrity of our beautiful game…but the painful memories and the gut-wrenching sacrifice of Botafogo’s corrupted 2023 Brasileirão campaign will, hopefully, prove not to have been in vain…because the corruption of the past will have met the technology of the future, and football in Brasil will again be an example for the world to follow.

bottom of page