Asian soccer fights back against match-fixing

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SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- Asia's reputation as a hotbed of soccer match-fixing and corruption is getting some overdue attention, as nations move to clean up the sport and position the region as a rival to Europe and South America in attracting players, fans and investment.

Last week Chinese courts handed out prison sentences to senior officials and players for accepting bribes, while South Korea is taking measures to improve the sport after the match-fixing scandal of 2011.

Earlier this week, soccer's governing body, FIFA, extended the national bans imposed by South Korea's K-League on 13 players into worldwide sanctions. Former national team player Kim Dong-hyun received a lifetime ban just a month after being arrested in Seoul for an attempted kidnapping at knifepoint.