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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Grobbelaar Goes on Trial for Match-Fixing

WINCHESTER, England -- Goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar has won some of the top prizes in soccer and faced some of the best strikers in the game.

On Tuesday, he had something more serious to defend against -- match-fixing allegations.

Two days after helping Zimbabwe score a shutout victory in a World Cup qualifier, the 39-year-old former Liverpool and Southampton goalkeeper lined up in court next to fellow soccer stars Hans Segers and John Fashanu, in a bribery trial.

The three players and Malaysian businessman Heng Suen Lim are accused of conspiracy to give or accept cash to rig the results of certain Premier League matches in the biggest scandal in English soccer in 32 years.

The four defendants all arrived separately for the first day of the trial at Winchester Crown Court.

Fashanu said, "I had a lovely Christmas," and gave a thumbs up before going inside. Grobbelaar waved to photographers before entering the courthouse.

"I am very confident," Grobbelaar said before Saturday's 3-0 victory over Togo in Harare. "Everything will be cleared. If you go to court and listen, you'll get the full story ... People will realize at the end of the day what the real story is, and it will all come out in court."

Grobbelaar, former Wimbledon players Segers and Fashanu and businessman Lim are charged with conspiring to give or accept gifts of money as inducements to influence the outcome of games.

Grobbelaar, now with Plymouth in English division two, is also charged with corruptly accepting ?2,000 ($3,400) from former business partner Chris Vincent as an inducement or reward for fixing a game.

The offenses allegedly occurred between 1991 and 1994.

If convicted, all three players face jail sentences and life bans from the game in the biggest scandal since 1964 when Peter Swan, David "Bronco" Layne and Tony Kay were jailed for four months and banned for life.

The scandal broke in November 1994 when Vincent made the allegations to the tabloid Sun newspaper. Vincent also turned over a videotape allegedly showing Grobbelaar accepting a package of money from him and allegedly explaining how it was possible to fix the result of a game.

Vincent, who is likely to be the chief prosecuting witness at the trial, has since been charged with attempting to pervert the course of justice by offering to drop his testimony in exchange for payment.