February 25, 2024

Former Everton star Li Tie sentenced to life in prison

Former Everton star Li Tie sentenced to life in prison

MANCHESTER – OCTOBER 7: Li Tie of Everton (R) with David Beckham of Manchester United during the FA Barclaycard Premiership Game between Manchester United and Everton at Old Trafford, Manchester, England on October 7, 2002. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Former Everton player Li Tie has been found guilty of corruption in his native China and given a life sentence.

After first joining the Premier League club on loan, Li spent four years at Everton from 2002 to 2006, making 40 appearances for the team in all competitions.

The 46-year-old, who served as manager of the China national side from 2019 to 2021, also played for Sheffield United for a while, though he only made one appearance for the club.

According to reports, Li will now likely spend the rest of his life in prison due to a Chinese crackdown on football corruption.

Li was “suspected of accepting and offering bribes” by the Chinese, only a year after he resigned as his country’s manager.

Li said in a live confession on CCTV, the official Chinese channel, that he had paid roughly £330,000 to oversee the national football team.

The former defensive midfield player also acknowledged that, in order to advance with the Chinese club teams he played for, he had participated in a match-fixing scandal.

‘I’m very sorry,’ Li said in a televised statement. ‘I should have kept my head to the ground and followed the right path. There were certain things that at the time were common practices in football.

‘By gaining ‘success’ through such improper means, it actually made me more and more impatient and eager for quick results.

‘In order to achieve good performance, I resorted to influencing referees, bribing opposing players and coaches, sometimes through clubs dealing with other clubs.’

Vanguard News