Damkova, the new boss of Czech referees

Former top female referee Dagmar Damkova has been appointed to head the Czech referee’s committee in a surprise move announced by the national football association’s executive committee on Monday.
The committee cleared out the current members of the committee and tasked Damkova with picking her own team to staff the future committee, the Football Association of the Czech Republic (FACR) said in a statement. The executive committee did not explain the full reason for the red card being given to current committee members, but said Damkova’s new post was logical following her appointment to the UEFA referees’ committee. She became the first woman appointed to the referees’ committee of European football’s governing body (UEFA) in July. The honor followed a pioneering path in Czech football for the 36-year-old woman. She was the first female official to referee a Czech men’s top-flight soccer league game in 2003. The all-male executive committee, which includes former Manchester United midfield star Karel Poborsky, said in a statement that Damkova’s top post in European football had sparked the wholesale changes at home. “When Dagmar Damkova was selected for the UEFA referees’ committee, what’s more as a woman, the time has come for such changes. It is the practice in most countries that a high official in UEFA heads the relevant committee at home,” the deputy chairman of the executive committee, Jindrich Rajchl, explained.

Damkova, who retired from refereeing top games in August, announced on September 3 that she was no longer standing to be head of the Czech football association, on advice from European football’s governing body, UEFA. “The reason was pretty simple. According to the opinion of people in UEFA, a position on the prestigious international referees’ committee could not be combined with the highest post in the national association,” she said, according to the FACR statement. “Because I want to work on UEFA’s referees’ committee, which so far none of us [Czechs] has done, I have decided to withdraw my candidacy to be the chairman of the football association,” Damkova said. The vote for the top job in Czech football takes place at a special meeting of the association in Prague on September 16.

Source: Czech Position