Cheats never prosper. Well, not unless they are religious football cheats.
Some people say that sport and politics shouldn't mix.
Personally I find sport and religion to be a worse combination.
I hate to see religion being dragged onto the football field, whether it is the idiotic sectarian chants of Scottish football fans, or players crossing themselves as they enter the pitch, or pointing to the sky after they have scored as if some divine intervention was responsible for their talent and actions.
Divine intervention seems particularly out of place in sport, which is surely about pitting the athletic ability of man against man, team against team.
And sometimes chemically enhanced man against chemically enhanced man.
So I was dismayed to see at the end of the Champions League final one of the Milan players, Kaka, running around the Athens perimeter wearing a t-shirt bearing the slogan "I belong to Jesus".
It is at times like that I wish I was the person doing the end of match interviews on the pitch.
Instead of asking questions begging platitudes like "It was a game of two halves, the other team must be sick as a parrot, I'm over the moon etc", I'd ask something else.
"Did you belong to Jesus last season? When the team you play for qualified for the Champions League, which you have just won, not through the divine will and intervention of Jesus, but through the intervention of cash to referees, and due to match-fixing?"
On August 2nd last year a UEFA Emergency Panel considered whether A.C. Milan should be admitted to the competition at all, after they were found guilty of their part in Italy's match-fixing scandal. UEFA's panel issued the following press statement:
"The UEFA Emergency Panel, being competent to decide on this matter, came to the conclusion that it had no choice but to admit AC Milan for the UEFA club competitions 2006/07 for formal reasons because of an insufficient legal basis in the regulations which would allow not admitting AC Milan under the specific circumstances.
The UEFA Emergency Panel made a clear statement to the club that 'this admission is far from being given with the utmost conviction. AC Milan takes advantage of the fact that UEFA lacks legal grounds to refuse the club's admission.
The UEFA Emergency Panel is deeply concerned that AC Milan has created the impression of being involved in the improper influencing of the regular course of matches in the Italian football championship.'
From the statement of AC Milan, the Panel concluded that 'the club has obviously not yet properly perceived the troubles it is in and the damage it already caused to European football. UEFA and the club's opponents will observe with the utmost attention the future attitude of AC Milan around UEFA club competition fixtures. UEFA will not hesitate to intervene severely, should AC Milan be involved in any activities aiming to arrange improperly the outcome of a match.'"
Last night, without any reference to that statement, UEFA awarded match-fixers A.C. Milan the trophy and title "Champions Of Europe", and the riches that go with it.
And that says a lot about the ethics of the religion of football.