CAF Referee of the Year 2015: Gassama (GAM)

Bakary Gassama was named 2015 African Referee of the Year, his second in a row, equalling the record held by Algerian Djamel Haimoudi, who won in 2012 and 2013. The Gambian FIFA referee, 36, soared to the prestigious award at the expense of Egyptian Ghead Grisha, Janny Sikazwe of Zambia and Gabonese Eric Otogo Castane. He was presented with his prize by CAF Executive Committee member Magd Shams El Dine at the 2015 Glo-CAF Awards Gala in Abuja, Nigeria. The Referee of the Year award was decided by the votes of the CAF Referees Committee members.
Gassama's (photo) next target would be to become the first man to win three straight African Referee of the Year Awards and because of his current standing in the game, both at continental and global level, the Gambian could establish a monopoly that may prove very difficult to surmount. During the year under review, Gassama who won the 2014 edition, handled and discharged his duties professionally in some high profile games including the final of the AFCON 2015 in Equatorial Guinea and the CAF Champions League final. Having become a FIFA referee in 2007, Bakary Gassama has over the last eight years proved to be one of the foremost referees in world football. After refereeing in the 2012 Olympics in London, where he was the fourth official in the Gold Cup Match between eventual winners Mexico and Brazil, the Gambian officiated the Netherlands - Chile clash in the group phase of the 2014 World Cup. He was rated one of the seven best referees in that competition by FIFA and for someone who would turn 37 in February, Gassama is again in line to participate at the 2018 edition in Russia.

Source: All Africa