Howard Webb, MBE

Howard Webb had a very successful 2010, when he became the first referee to officiate both the UEFA Champions League Final and the FIFA World Cup Final in the same year. Webb received the Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) from the Prince of Wales and was joined at the Palace by his wife Kay and their three children Hollie, 12, Jack, 10, and seven-year-old Lucy. "I never dreamt when I started refereeing that I would get something like this. It's on behalf of the lads who work with me”, said Webb. "We are quite often doing thankless work, week in week out. You develop a thick skin and you've got to have a lot of self belief. I was there to do a job and do it to the best of my abilities. I was hoping that football would be the winner and that they would remember the game for the right reasons not for all the cards we had to show”. He added: "The Prince said it was nice that somebody had recognised referees as it's such a difficult job. He mentioned that it wasn't an easy game in the final. It was a great honour to do and nice to have some representation from England".

Webb will be travelling to Brazil in November to take part at the 2011 Soccerex Global Convention in Rio de Janeiro. Webb will be a part of a special panel titled “The Great Football Debate”, which will include a mix of big name football industry stakeholders including leading journalists, club and business figures. The panel will give their different perspectives on some of the biggest issues affecting global football today. The 2010 Football Festival saw legends teams from Argentina , Brazil , Holland and England with the Brazilians beating the Dutch in the final to take home the trophy. Players such as Ruud Gullit, Denílson, Jorginho and Romario were all in attendance. In recent years, the festival has attracted other such legendary players as Eric Cantona, Carlos Alberto Torres, Eusebio, Leonardo, Bryan Robson, Phil Thompson, Ossie Ardiles, Lucas Radebe, Ronald de Boer and George Weah.