Danish club Viborg FF to sue soccer player they claim lied about being a professional athlete
The team signed Bernio Verhagen before seeing him play
Viborg FF, a Danish soccer club, admitted to signing 25-year-old Dutchman Bernio Verhagen to a professional contract before they ever saw him actually play the sport. As it turns out, Verhagen might not be a professional athlete. The team is alleging fraud by his agents and have filed a criminal complaint, according to Reuters.
It became evident that Verhagen's level of play was not as advertised at his first training session with Viborg. They pulled him from the practice after seeing his performance.
The team said in a statement that the "clear picture of a large scam" may include people from multiple countries.
What is not officially clear is whether Verhagen actually played for the clubs he claimed to be part of, which includes Audax Italiano.
Igor Dobrovolsky, the head coach of Dinamo-Auto -- one of the teams Verhagen claimed to be associated with -- said they never have heard of the 25-year-old. Cape Town City owner John Comitis said Verhagen never had a contract with his club, despite claims that say otherwise.
"He was never registered or has played for Cape Town City. He was going to, but we discovered that something was not right, so we pulled out of giving him an official contract," Comitis told Reuters.
Verhagen's player page on Transfermarkt, a soccer statistics database, does include Dinamo-Auto and Cape Town under his transfer history.
A local prosecutor also told Reuters that Verhagen has been arrested due to suspicion of assaulting his girlfriend, robbery and threatening witnesses. Verhagen denied those charges through his lawyer but had no comment on the fraud accusations.
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