Pesoli defiant after hunger strike

The 31-year-old, now with Verona, chained himself to the gates

of the Italian Football Association (FIGC) headquarters on Saturday

in protest at the three-year ban handed to him for his alleged

involvement in match-fixing.

But following medical advice, and on the promise of a meeting

with FIGC president Giancarlo Abete, he unchained himself and

returned home on Wednesday.

Pesoli was hit with the lengthy ban from football as a result of

federal prosecutor Stefano Palazzi’s investigation into betting

irregularities during last season.

He was accused by two former team-mates, defender Carlo

Gervasoni and midfielder Filippo Carobbio, in assisting in the

fixing of Siena’s game with Varese in May 2011.

Pesoli told “I’ve never spoken to Palazzi but

he suspended me for three years.

“I’ve never considered any plea bargain, I’m innocent and I’m

not prepared to pay this penalty.

“I’m grateful to the FIGC for listening to me but I haven’t got

what I want yet.

“I want a meeting with Gervasoni and Carobbio but they haven’t

made that happen.

“Palazzi believed everything they said and I have never even

spoken to him or had the chance to defend myself.

“He believed them and banned me for three years, while giving

Gervasoni only three months.”

He added: “I was at home, my phone rang – an unknown number.

“It was Gervasoni. I didn’t know him at the time.

“After that call followed a lot of texts, mostly asking who

would be playing on the next Sunday.

“They weren’t direct questions, but they seemed to be asking for

specific information.”

Despite his suspicions at the time, Pesoli is still unclear as

to why he was implicated by Gervasoni.

“I can only assume it was out of revenge that I wouldn’t be his

accomplice,” he added.

“Maybe he thought if he dragged people down with him, he’d

receive a lighter punishment.

“It’s absurd that he’s been banned for three months but I got

three years.

“As far any contact with Carobbio – totally fabricated.

“My only crime was being a man of integrity and a clean


The Verona defender is set to hold talks with Abete at the FIGC

headquarters in Rome at 10am on Friday morning.