Referee Bascunan among the best-selling piñatas in Peru

Traditionally in South America, on 31 December people use piñatas to vent their fury for some bad experience they have had during the year. Therefore, this 2020 came much more loaded due to the stress of the people due to Covid-19 and the famous piñatas with the faces of characters that have left their mark throughout the last 365 days are running out. 
As can be seen in the TV images, the celebrations of this New Year may be different due to the coronavirus, but still Peruvians buy piñatas to burn them as soon as 2021 begins. And it is under this context that one of the best sellers is the piñatas with the face of the Chilean referee Julio Bascunan, who led Peru vs Brazil match for the Qatar 2022 Qualifiers. Peru lost 2-4 at the National Stadium in Lima and the referee earned the fury of all Peruvians who believe that he favored the visiting team on many occasions and even awarded a non-existent penalty due to a clash between Carlos Zambrano and Neymar. There are other very creative piñatas, such as those of Luis Advincula and Sheyla Rojas. The defender of Rayo Vallecano was exposed together with the model on Peruvian television and as a result of this, countless memes were created, which is why they now appear in the iconic end-of-year celebrations. The alternatives do not end there and it is that the face of President Francisco Sagasti, that of Martin Vizcarra, that of Manuel Merino and even Nicolas Maduro also appears among the best-selling piñatas. 

Source: AP

CONMEBOL Sudamericana 2020 – Semi-finals (First Leg)

6-7 January 2021

Velez Sarsfield – Lanus
Referee: John Ospina (COL, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Dionisio Ruiz (COL)
Assistant Referee 2: Miguel Roldan (COL)
Fourth Official: Carlos Herrera (COL)
Reserve AR: Sebastian Vela (COL)
VAR: Mauro Vigliano (ARG)
AVAR 1: Fernando Espinoza (ARG)
AVAR 2: Juan Belatti (ARG)

Coquimbo Unido – Defensa y Justicia
Referee: Jesus Valenzuela (VEN)
Assistant Referee 1: Jorge Urrego (VEN)
Assistant Referee 2: Tulio Moreno (VEN)
Fourth Official: Augusto Aragon (ECU)
Reserve AR: Lubin Torrealba (VEN)
VAR: Andres Cunha (URU)
AVAR 1: Gery Vargas (BOL)
AVAR 2: Christian Lescano (ECU)

CONMEBOL Libertadores 2020 – Semi-finals (First Leg)

5-6 January 2021 

River Plate – Palmeiras
Referee: Leodan Gonzalez (URU, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Nicolas Taran (URU)
Assistant Referee 2: Carlos Barrero (URU)
Fourth Official: Andres Matonte (URU)
Reserve AR: Michael Orue (PER)
VAR: Julio Bascunan (CHI)
AVAR 1: Victor Carrillo (PER)
AVAR 2: Raul Orellana (CHI)

Boca Juniors – Santos
Referee: Roberto Tobar (CHI)
Assistant Referee 1: Claudio Urrutia (CHI)
Assistant Referee 2: Alejandro Molina (CHI)
Fourth Official: Angelo Hermosilla (CHI)
Reserve AR: Jose Retamal (CHI)
VAR: Juan Benitez (PAR)
AVAR 1: Eduardo Gamboa (CHI)
AVAR 2: Milciades Saldivar (PAR)

30 years since Stoichkov’s famous stomp on referee Urizar's foot

On 5 December 1990, the Spanish Super Cup match between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid was played at the Camp Nou. Bulgarian player Hristo Stoichkov, who had arrived at the Catalan club six months earlier, became the protagonist of that match by stomping on the referee Urizar Azpitarte’s foot. 
“It all started with a strong tackle from Chendo on Stoichkov near the Barça bench. Chendo was strong, but he didn't touch him. He started to protest and Cruyff came off the bench swinging his arms and asking for a card. On that day, Cruyff had put two kids on defense (Alex and Herrera) and it didn't go well. They lost 0-1 and it was minute 39. With his protests, he wanted to throw the public on top of me to take advantage of it. I told him that Chendo had not touched Stoichkov and asked him not to protest any more or I would kick him out. He responded that I was not going to dare to throw him out at the Camp Nou. And I kicked him out, yes, kicked him out. Then Stoichkov began to protest louder. He insisted that Chendo hit him and I said no. And I admonished him. Then he told me something, so I gave him the second yellow and sent him off. He approached me and I notified Rodolfo Peris, the Barça delegate, to take the Bulgarian off. At that moment, unexpectedly, he stepped on my foot. At first, I couldn't believe it, but when it started to hurt, I believed it. I finished the first half as best I could and then, in the dressing room, I was attended by Angel Mur. I had a wound because the studs were made of aluminum. That was a like a bomb around the world. I had seven uncles in Venezuela and they all called me to find out what had happened to me. They called me from the Federation to testify. I told them that Stoichkov was wrong, but that he was a good kid. He came from the East and there young people had to get tough very soon. And I told them that he had apologized, which was not true, but I said it because I believed that it was early and that he should not be destroyed... He was suspended 12 games. And see what life is, we eventually got together at an event and we hit it off. He even gave me the boots with which he stepped on me along with his dedicated book". 

Frappart lives in a bubble: “no social media or newspapers”

At the beginning of December, Stephanie Frappart made football history. As she stepped out to take charge of Juventus' match against Dynamo Kyiv, she became the first woman to referee a men's Champions League game. The Frenchwoman's name was all over the world's media, inspiring young girls everywhere, but Frappart was oblivious. In her own words, she lives in a bubble. "I have no social media," Frappart told BBC Sport. "I never read newspapers about me. I make my bubble. I know that in football everybody speaks about referees and performance. I still ignore everything. I prefer it like this." 
It is not the first time Frappart has etched her name in football's history books. She was the first woman to take charge of a men's match in a major UEFA competition when Liverpool and Chelsea met in the 2019 Super Cup. That year, the 37-year-old also refereed the Women's World Cup final between the United States and the Netherlands, and has refereed French Ligue 1 games since 2019. Frappart, who started playing football aged 10, oversaw her first Europa League game in October when Leicester City hosted Zorya Luhansk and says refereeing at the men's World Cup in 2022 would be a "bonus". 
Her presence in such high-profile games is bound to inspire young girls watching to follow in her footsteps and Frappart says this would be "a great pleasure". "I know that I am a role model," Frappart added. "Young women are watching TV, so I know that if I am here on the field they can see that it's possible. This is the first thing that will help some young girls to start refereeing. I know that I have a role in that, but I am not pushing women too much because they will continue by themselves and they will decide if they want to be a referee or not." Like all officials, Frappart has had to adapt to the arrival of the video assistant referee (VAR). The technology has been a source of much debate since its introduction, with fans and players alike complaining about controversial decisions made after a VAR intervention. But Frappart describes it as "a very good help", adding: "We continue to referee as before. We make the decision on the field of play and after that it is good to have help in case we make big mistakes. I think it's good for football." 

Source: BBC

FIFA cancelled 2021 U-20 and U-17 World Cups

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Bureau of the FIFA Council has decided to cancel the 2021 editions of the men’s FIFA U-20 World Cup and FIFA U-17 World Cup, and to appoint Indonesia and Peru respectively, who were due to host the tournaments in 2021, as the hosts of the 2023 editions.
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to present challenges for the hosting of international sporting events and to have a restrictive effect on international travel. FIFA has therefore regularly consulted the relevant stakeholders, including the host member associations as well as the confederations involved in both tournaments originally scheduled to take place in 2021. In doing so, it became clear that the global situation has failed to normalise to a sufficient level to address the challenges associated with hosting both tournaments, including the feasibility of the relevant qualification pathways. 

Source: FIFA

Paco Bru refereed with a pistol

The story of Francisco Bru Sanz (1885-1962), known in the world of football as Paco Bru, is directly related to the development of football in Spain at the beginning of the 20th century. In fact, he was the first national coach. Although born in Madrid, he is considered from Barcelona because he spent there his childhood and the beginning of his professional career. He started as a footballer, eventually playing for FC Barcelona from 1906 to 1916, the date of his retirement. He was chosen to lead the Spanish football team at the Antwerp Olympic Games at only 35 years old. He then held various positions in the Catalan Federation and founded the Catalan College of Referees. He continued to set an example and refereed until 1923. It was in this facet that one of the most curious and striking episodes about him is remembered. It is said that he refereed a match in Catalonia armed with a Colt revolver and he even said: "We can do two things: either we end the game in order or tomorrow a few of us will be in the obituaries", according to an article dedicated to Bru in the Panenka Magazine. Jesus Ramos, columnist at Marca, remembers that he took a pistol out of his coat, left it on the table and, when he finished dressing, before going out onto the field of play, he inserted the weapon between his shirt and pants before the astonished eyes of the players. Then he went out to referee the match. He says that the gun was a toy, but only he knew that, so there were not too many protests to his decisions. 

Source: Ideal

UEFA female officials making big strides in the men's game

Stephanie Frappart made UEFA Champions League history earlier this month when she became the first woman to referee a match in the competition, taking the whistle as Juventus beat Dynamo Kyiv in Turin on Matchday 5. The appointment attracted headlines around the world. For UEFA, it was business as usual with an appointment based on Frappart’s reputation as one of Europe's top referees. 
Frappart, who had attracted similar attention in 2019 by officiating at the UEFA Super Cup in Istanbul, is far from the only female official operating regularly in the men's game. Similar to Frappart, Ukraine's Kateryna Monzul has refereed in the UEFA Nations League and the UEFA Europa League group stage this season. Monzul's Gent-Liberec assignment on 3 December was the first UEFA men's fixture at which a female official was flanked by two female assistants – Oleksandra Ardasheva and Maryna Striletska. 
"Appointments are made on merit and these women deserve praise for their hard work and dedication that has brought them to this level," says UEFA chief of refereeing Roberto Rosetti. "The appointments of female officials in the men's competitions should not come as a surprise any more – UEFA has worked hard in recent years to develop male and female referees across Europe equally and what we are seeing now is evidence that this approach is working." Indeed, aside from those in the middle, more and more female assistants are gaining experience at the highest level of men's football. Greece's Chrysoula Kourompylia, an assistant referee, has been a regular appointee at UEFA men's matches since 2014/15, England's Sian Maassey-Ellis has assisted in both the Europa League and the Nations League since 2019, with Spain's Guadalupe Porras Ayuso following in her path this season. Germany’s Bibiana Steinhaus, who this year retired from a career that included officiating in the Bundesliga, now regularly fulfils Champions League VAR duties, assisting the recent group matches. On the futsal court, history was made recently when Russia's Irina Velikanova and Tatiana Boltneva took charge of the UEFA Futsal Champions League match between United Galati and Dolphins Ashdod – the first female pairing of referees in UEFA men's futsal history. 
Such impressive progress in ensuring equal opportunities for referees, regardless of gender, is no accident. It is the product of a long-term UEFA strategy that started after Nicole Petignat became the first woman to referee a UEFA men's game – as long ago as 2003 – when she oversaw a UEFA Cup preliminary round match between Sweden's AIK and Iceland's Fylkir. 
Since 2013, female officials have joined their male counterparts at UEFA's summer and winter refereeing courses, bringing together the elite lists of referees, as well as newcomers to the FIFA international list, first to prepare for the season ahead and then to analyse progress at its halfway point. The courses entail fitness tests, education and instructional sessions aimed at helping them prepare further for elite-level action. "We’re delighted with how Europe’s top male and female referees have responded to the challenge," Rosetti says. "They are unbelievably professional in their preparation – their attention to their condition and health is extremely meticulous. Over the years, with our help, their fitness levels have developed to the stage where they are now as much high-performance athletes as the players are. They know what they have to do – they’re ready for the coming matches. We’re very proud of them." 

Source: UEFA

Concacaf Champions League Final 2020: Escobar (GUA)

The 34-year-old Guatemalan Mario Escobar will oversee the Final. A FIFA international referee since 2013, Escobar boasts a wealth of experience. He has officiated in the last five editions of the SCCL and since February 2018 has refereed 17 matches in international competition. Among his recent highlights in Concacaf club competition is officiating the decisive second leg of the Final of the 2018 Scotiabank Concacaf League between Motagua (HON) and Herediano (CRC) and the first leg of the 2019 SCCL semifinal between Monterrey (MEX) and Sporting Kansas City (USA). Escobar has also excelled as a referee in national team competition, officiating the Final of the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup between Mexico and the United States, plus serving as a FIFA referee during the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Brazil. (Source: Concacaf


22 December 2020 
Tigres UANL – Los Angeles FC 
Referee: Mario Escobar (GUA, photo) 
Assistant Referee 1: Humberto Panjoj (GUA, photo)
Assistant Referee 2: Gerson Lopez (GUA)
Fourth Official: Daneon Parchment (JAM)
Reserve AR: Nicholas Anderson (JAM)

Concacaf position on VAR and other matters in the CCL semi-finals

Concacaf made a decision in 2019 to roll out VAR into its competitions from 2021 onwards. Since 2019 the Confederation has been training and developing referees in the region to deliver on this commitment. Several tournaments scheduled for this year, including age group Concacaf national team competitions, were due to be crucial opportunities to trial VAR and provide more experience for our referees. The cancellation of these competitions due to the pandemic has made our work in this area more difficult. However, despite these challenges, Concacaf will introduce VAR into the 2021 edition of the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League (SCCL) and the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup. As it relates to the 2020 SCCL, it had already commenced with more than half of the competition being played earlier this year without VAR and we could not introduce it for these final centralized matches.
The SCCL semifinal between LAFC and Club America included some great football from both teams and was a compelling match. However, some incidents were unacceptable and have been considered by the Concacaf Disciplinary Committee. The Committee has sanctioned former Club America Head Coach Miguel Herrera and LAFC Assistant Coach Ante Razov each with four-match suspensions for unsporting conduct. Additionally, Miguel Herrera has been sanctioned with a further one-match suspension for continuing to communicate with the team after being ejected from the game. These sanctions are applicable in all Concacaf club competitions with immediate effect. 
The regulations of the SCCL clearly state that referee decisions on the field are final. This is in line with FIFA regulations for their competitions and has been in place throughout the tournament. From an integrity perspective, the Confederation cannot change the rules at this late stage of the competition. For this reason, it is not possible to overturn red cards awarded in the 2020 SCCL.

Source: Concacaf

CONMEBOL Talented Referees

From December 7 to 11, 2020, the CONMEBOL Referees Committee carried out the “Talented Referees” project, dedicated to the development and support of young referees and those who have not yet obtained the FIFA badge. 
The objective is to accelerate the process of development of the careers of referees, who are active in the First Division of their Member Association, and to raise the standard of refereeing quality in South American football. To access this course, the applicants completed the physical, technical and language requirements of CONMEBOL in order to be able to integrate in the future the list of international referees of their Member Association, such as participation in FIFA RAP courses, participation in the pre-season activities in their respective country, nomination to FIFA List. 
This year, as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic, the course was held for the first time virtually, with 77 participants divided into 43 men and 34 women. They were all evaluated by the CONMEBOL Referees Commttee on technical topics, video tests and tests with VAR analysis situations in simulators. “With this project we have trained several of our referees who later achieved the FIFA badge. Our applicants have all the tools and are aware of the requirements to reach this refereeing seat at the continental and world level”, stated Wilson Seneme, president of the CONMEBOL Referees Committee. 
Those who are approved by FIFA will be part of the new list of international referees of CONMEBOL starting in 2021. This is one more step for CONMEBOL, through its Referees Committee, towards sports justice within the field of play, providing support with courses and initiatives that serve to train and always aim for refereeing excellence. 

Source: CONMEBOL

UEFA Referee Categories - second half of the season 2020/2021

Men 

Elite 
Aleksei Kulbakov (BLR), Michael Oliver (ENG), Anthony Taylor (ENG), Carlos Del Cerro Grande (ESP), Jesus Gil Manzano (ESP), Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP), Benoit Bastien (FRA), Clement Turpin (FRA), Deniz Aytekin (GER), Felix Brych (GER), Tobias Stieler (GER), Felix Zwayer (GER), Anastasios Sidiropoulos (GRE), Orel Grinfeeld (ISR), Daniele Orsato (ITA), Björn Kuipers (NED), Danny Makkelie (NED), Szymon Marciniak (POL), Artur Soares Dias (POR), Ovidiu Hategan (ROU), Istvan Kovacs (ROU), Sergei Karasev (RUS), William Collum (SCO), Ivan Kruzliak (SVK), Damir Skomina (SVN), Slavko Vincic (SVN), Cüneyt Cakir (TUR). 

First Category 
Harald Lechner (AUT), Manuel Schüttengruber (AUT), Aliyar Aghayev (AZE), Lawrence Visser (BEL), Irfan Peljto (BIH), Georgi Kabakov (BUL), Ivan Bebek (CRO), Fran Jovic (CRO), Petr Ardeleanu (CZE), Jakob Kehlet (DEN), Christopher Kavanagh (ENG), Craig Pawson (ENG), Javier Estrada Fernandez (ESP), Alejandro Hernandez Hernandez (ESP), Jose Sanchez Martinez (ESP), Kristo Tohver (EST), Mattias Gestranius (FIN), Jerome Brisard (FRA), Ruddy Buquet (FRA), Francois Letexier (FRA), Daniel Siebert (GER), Tamas Bognar (HUN), Istvan Vad (HUN), Roi Reinshreiber (ISR), Marco Guida (ITA), Maurizio Mariani (ITA), Davide Massa (ITA), Donatas Rumsas (LTU), Andris Treimanis (LVA), Aleksandar Stavrev (MKD), Nikola Dabanovic (MNE), Serdar Gözübüyük (NED), Bas Nijhuis (NED), Bartosz Frankowski (POL), Pawel Gil (POL), Pawel Raczkowski (POL), Daniel Stefanski (POL), Tiago Martins (POR), Fabio Verissimo (POR), Radu Petrescu (ROU), Sergei Ivanov (RUS), John Beaton (SCO), Robert Madden (SCO), Srdjan Jovanovic (SRB), Sandro Schärer (SUI), Matej Jug (SVN), Andreas Ekberg (SWE), Glenn Nyberg (SWE), Halil Meler (TUR), Halis Özkahya (TUR), Ali Palabiyik (TUR), Ievgenii Aranovskyi (UKR), Sergii Boiko (UKR). 

Second Category 
Enea Jorgji (ALB), Julian Weinberger (AUT), Alexandre Boucaut (BEL), Erik Lambrechts (BEL), Jonathan Lardot (BEL), Volen Chinkov (BUL), Ivaylo Stoyanov (BUL), Duje Strukan (CRO), Timotheos Christofí (CYP), Pavel Orel (CZE), Miroslav Zelinka (CZE), Jörgen Burchardt (DEN), Peter Kjaersgaard (DEN), Mads-Kristoffer Kristoffersen (DEN), Jens Maae (DEN), Stuart Attwell (ENG), Peter Bankes (ENG), David Coote (ENG), Andrew Madley (ENG), Paul Tierney (ENG), Guillermo Cuadra Fernandez (ESP), Ricardo De Burgos Bengoechea (ESP), Juan Martinez Munuera (ESP), Jose Munuera Montero (ESP), Juri Frischer (EST), Antti Munukka (FIN), Petri Viljanen (FIN), Karim Abed (FRA), Willy Delajod (FRA), Benoît Millot (FRA), Jeremie Pignard (FRA), Frank Schneider (FRA), Kari a Hovdanum (FRO), Giorgi Kruashvili (GEO), Bastian Dankert (GER), Christian Dingert (GER), Marco Fritz (GER), Harm Osmers (GER), Sascha Stegemann (GER), Ioannis Papadopoulos (GRE), Anastasios Papapetrou (GRE), Adam Farkas (HUN), Neil Doyle (IRL), Robert Harvey (IRL), Robert Hennessy (IRL), Thorvaldur Arnason (ISL), Vilhjalmur Thorarinsson (ISL), Yigal Frid (ISR), Marco Di Bello (ITA), Daniele Doveri (ITA), Michael Fabbri (ITA), Massimiliano Irrati (ITA), Fabio Maresca (ITA), Paolo Valeri (ITA), Artyom Kuchin (KAZ), Alain Durieux (LUX), Aleksandrs Anufrijevs (LVA), Dumitru Muntean (MDA), Trustin Farrugia Cann (MLT), Dennis Higler (NED), Espen Eskas (NOR), Svein Moen (NOR), Kai Steen (NOR), Krzysztof Jakubik (POL), Luis Godinho (POR), Joao Pinheiro (POR), Horatiu Fesnic (ROU), Vladislav Bezborodov (RUS), Sergei Lapochkin (RUS), Kirill Levnikov (RUS), Vitaly Meshkov (RUS), Kevin Clancy (SCO), Donald Robertson (SCO), Nicholas Walsh (SCO), Alain Bieri (SUI), Adrien Jaccottet (SUI), Lionel Tschudi (SUI), Filip Glova (SVK), Peter Kralovic (SVK), Rade Obrenovic (SVN), Mohammed Al-Hakim (SWE), Kristoffer Karlsson (SWE), Bojan Pandzic (SWE), Mykola Balakin (UKR), Iwan Griffith (WAL). 

Third Category 
Eldorjan Hamiti (ALB), Juxhin Xhaja (ALB), Luis Teixeira (AND), Ashot Ghaltakhchyan (ARM), Zaven Hovhannisyan (ARM), Henrik Nalbandyan (ARM), Walter Altmann (AUT), Christian Ciochirca (AUT), Sebastian Gishamer (AUT), Christopher Jäger (AUT), Rauf Jabarov (AZE), Elchin Masiyev (AZE), Luka Bilbija (BIH), Haris Kaljanac (BIH), Nicolas Laforge (BEL), Bram Van Driessche (BEL), Nathan Verboomen (BEL), Dzmitry Dzmitryieu (BLR), Amine Kourgheli (BLR), Viktar Shymusik (BLR), Stefan Apostolov (BUL), Georgi Davidov (BUL), Dragomir Draganov (BUL), Nikola Popov (BUL), Dario Bel (CRO), Igor Pajac (CRO), Mario Zebec (CRO), Vasilis Dimitriou (CYP), Nikolas Neokleous (CYP), Loukas Sotiriou (CYP), Ondrej Berka (CZE), Ondrej Pechanec (CZE), Pavel Rejzek (CZE), Morten Hansen (DEN), Sandi Putros (DEN), Joonas Jaanovits (EST), Mohammed Al-Emara (FIN), Kaarlo Hämäläinen (FIN), Joni Hyytiä (FIN), Alex Troleis (FRO), Goga Kikacheishvili (GEO), Irakli Kvirikashvili (GEO), Jason Barcelo (GIB), Aristotelis Diamantopoulos (GRE), Vasileios Fotias (GRE), Emmanouil Skoulas (GRE), Athanasios Tzilos (GRE), Balazs Berke (HUN), Gergo Bogar (HUN), Ferenc Karako (HUN), Paul McLaughlin (IRL), Helgi Jonasson (ISL), Ivar Kristjansson (ISL), David Fuxman (ISR), Gal Leibovitz (ISR), Snir Levi (ISR), Furkat Atazhanov (KAZ), Arman Ismuratov (KAZ), Daniyar Sakhi (KAZ), Visar Kastrati (KVX), Besfort Kasumi (KVX), Genc Nuza (KVX), Manfredas Lukjancukas (LTU), Robertas Valikonis (LTU), Laurent Kopriwa (LUX), Jasmin Sabotic (LUX), Vitalijs Spasjonnikovs (LVA), Veaceslav Banari (MDA), Ion Orlic (MDA), Dejan Jakimovski (MKD), Igor Stojčevski (MKD), Ishmael Barbara (MLT), Matthew De Gabriele (MLT), Philip Farrugia (MLT), Milovan Milacic (MNE), Mileta Scepanović (MNE), Jochem Kamphuis (NED), Allard Lindhout (NED), Andrew Davey (NIR), Keith Kennedy (NIR), Ian McNabb (NIR), Jamie Robinson (NIR), Kristoffer Hagenes (NOR), Tore Hansen (NOR), Sigurd Kringstad (NOR), Rohit Saggi (NOR), Tomasz Musial (POL), Vitor Ferreira (POR), Antonio Nobre (POR), Hugo Miguel (POR), Iancu Vasilica (POR), Marian Barbu (ROU), Marcel Bîrsan (ROU), Andrei Chivulete (ROU), Pavel Kukuian (RUS), Aleksei Matiunin (RUS), Vladimir Moskalev (RUS), David Munro (SCO), Luca Barbeno (SMR), Milos Djordjic (SRB), Lazar Lukic (SRB), Milos Milanovic (SRB), Novak Simovic (SRB), Lukas Fähndrich (SUI), Fedayi San (SUI), Urs Schnyder (SUI), Erik Gemzicky (SVK), Michal Ocenas (SVK), Nejc Kajtazovic (SVN), Adam Ladeback (SWE), Kaspar Sjöberg (SWE), Abdulkadir Bitigen (TUR), Arda Kardesler (TUR), Yasar Ugurlu (TUR), Viktor Kopiievskyi (UKR), Yaroslav Kozyk (UKR), Vitaly Romanov (UKR), Denys Shurman (UKR), Robert Jenkins (WAL), Thomas Owen (WAL). 

Women 

Elite 
Ivana Martincic (CRO), Jana Adamkova (CZE), Olga Zadinova (CZE), Rebecca Welch (ENG), Marta Huerta De Aza (ESP), Lina Lehtovaara (FIN), Stephanie Frappart (FRA), Riem Hussein (GER), Katalin Kulcsar (HUN), Sandra Braz Bastos (POR), Anastasia Pustovoitova (RUS), Lorraine Watson (SCO), Esther Staubli (SUI), Pernilla Larsson (SWE), Tess Olofsson (SWE), Sara Persson (SWE), Kateryna Monzul (UKR), Cheryl Foster (WAL). 

First Category 
Volha Tsiareshka (BLR), Hristiana Guteva (BUL), Frida Klarlund Nielsen (DEN), Marta Frias Acedo (ESP), Eleni Antoniou (GRE), Eszter Urban (HUN), Maria Marotta (ITA), Elvira Nurmustafina (KAZ), Ivana Projkovska (MKD), Shona Shukrula (NED), Henrikke Nervik (NOR), Ewa Augustyn (POL), Monika Mularczyk (POL), Silvia Domingos (POR), Iuliana Demetrescu (ROU), Desiree Grundbacher (SUI), Petra Pavlikova (SVK), Melis Ozcigdem (TUR). 

Second Category 
Barbara Poxhofer (AUT), Lois Otte (BEL), Galiya Echeva (BUL), Sabina Bolic (CRO), Jelena Pejkovic (CRO), Lucie Sulcova (CZE), Maria Martinez Madrona (ESP), Reelika Turi (EST), Angelika Soeder (GER), Karoline Wacker (GER), Paula Brady (IRL), Graziella Pirriatore (ITA), Rasa Grigone (LTU), Justina Lavrenovaite-Perez (LTU), Viola Raudzina (LVA), Vivian Peeters (NED), Catarina Campos (POR), Vera Opeikina (RUS), Jelena Cvetkovic (SRB), Simona Ghisletta (SUI), Zuzana Valentova (SVK), Aleksandra Cesen (SVN), Tanja Subotic (SVN). 

Third Category 
Emanuela Rusta (ALB), Araksya Saribekyan (ARM), Sofik Torosyan (ARM), Marina Aufschnaiter (AUS), Olivia Tschon (AUT), Yuliya Gurbanova (AZE), Viki De Cremer (BEL), Merima Celik (BIH), Tanja Racic (BIH), Alena Kanaplianikava (BLR), Kristina Georgieva (BUL), Dimitrina Milkova (BUL), Jelena Kumer (CRO), Ioanna Allaylotou (CYP), Zoe Stavrou (CYP), Veronika Kovarova (CZE), Frederikke Sokjaer (DEN), Abigail Byrne (ENG), Kirsty Dowle (ENG), Stacey Pearson (ENG), Ainara Acevedo Dudley (ESP), Zulema Gonzalez Gonzalez (ESP), Triinu Vaher (EST), Ifeoma Kulmala (FIN), Minka Vekkeli (FIN), Victoria Beyer (FRA), Alexandra Collin (FRA), Maika Vanderstichel (FRA), Franziska Wildfeuer (GER), Alexandra Deligianni (GRE), Andromachi Tsiofliki (GRE), Reka Molnar (HUN), Katalin Sipos (HUN), Briet Bragadottir (ISL), Meitar Shemesh (ISR), Maria Ferrieri Caputi (ITA), Valentina Finzi (ITA), Tatiana Sorokopudova (KAZ), Jurgita Macikunyte (LTU), Jeļena Jermolajeva (LVA), Natalia Clipca (MDA), Oxana Cruc (MDA), Irena Velevackoska (MKD), Marisca Overtoom (NED), Lizzy van der Helm (NED), Louise Thompson (NIR), Emilie Torkelsen (NOR), Sarah Zangeneh (NOR), Michalina Diakow (POL), Katarzyna Lisiecka-Sek (POL), Teresa Oliveira (POR), Alina Pesu (ROU), Ana Terteleac (ROU), Cristina Trandafir (ROU), Nadezhda Gorinova (RUS), Marina Krupskaya (RUS), Alexandra Ponomareva (RUS), Jelena Medjedovic (SRB), Marina Visnjic (SRB), Deborah Anex (SUI), Michele Schmolzer (SUI), Miriama Matulova (SVK), Lovisa Johansson (SWE), Gamze Durmuş (TUR), Neslihan Muratdagi (TUR), Cansu Tiryaki (TUR), Anastasiya Romanyuk (UKR), Liudmyla Telbukh (UKR), Kateryna Usova (UKR). 

Futsal 

Elite 
Stefan Vrijens (BEL), Borislav Kolev (BUL), Nikola Jelic (CRO), Ondrej Cerny (CZE), Marc Birkett (ENG), Juan Cordero Gallardo (ESP), Alejandro Martinez Flores (ESP), Kirill Naishouler (FIN), Victor Berg Audic (FRA), Cedric Pelissier (FRA), Gabor Kovacs (HUN), Angelo Galante (ITA), Eduardo Coelho (POR), Miguel Castilho (POR), Vladimir Kadykov (RUS), Ivan Shabanov (RUS), Petar Radojcic (SRB), Daniel Matkovic (SUI), Lukas Pesko (SVK), Admir Zahovic (SVN), Kamil Cetin (TUR). 

First Category 
Juan Boelen (BEL), Trayan Enchev (BUL), Vedran Babic (CRO), Jan Kresta (CZE), David Nissen (DEN), Peter Nurse (ENG), David Urdanoz Apezteguia (ESP), Grigori Osomkov (EST), Julien Lang (FRA), Vasileios Christodoulis (GRE), Moshe Bohbot (ISR), Nicola Manzione (ITA), Chiara Perona (ITA), Ingus Purins (LVA), Viktor Bugenko (MDA), Josip Barton (MKD), Marjan Mladenovski (MKD), Ibrahim El Jilali (NED), Tomasz Frak (POL), Cristiano Santos (POR), Vlad Ciobanu (ROU), Iuri Neverov (RUS), Irina Velikanova (RUS), Grigori Zelentsov (RUS), David Schaerli (SUI), Ales Mocnik (SVN), Ozan Soykan (TUR). 

Second Category 
Hikmat Qafarli (AZE), Alem Bajrovic (BIH), Maksim Dzeikala (BLR), Kaloyan Kirilov (BUL), Michalis Christofides (CYP), Yiangos Yiangou (CYP), Pablo Delgado (ESP), Raquel Gonzalez Ruano (ESP), Javier Moreno Reina (ESP), Arttu Kyynaeraeinen (FIN), Ingo Heemsoth (GER), Jacob Pawlowski (GER), Antonios Adamopoulos (GRE), Norbert Szilagyi (HUN), Giulio Colombin (ITA), Dario Pezzuto (ITA), Talgat Kosmukhambetov (KAZ), Besar Beqiri (KVX), Besart Ismajli (KVX), Sarunas Tamulynas (LTU), Eduards Fatkulins (LVA), Lars Van Leeuwen (NED), Omar Rafiq (NOR), Slawomir Steczko (POL), Ruben Santos (POR), Filipe Duarte (POR), Daniel Deca (ROU), Gordon McCabe (SCO), Daniele D’Adamo (SMR), Nebojsa Panic (SRB), Adrian Tschopp (SUI), Dejan Veselic (SVN), Haris Curovac (SWE), Ugur Cakmak (TUR), Murat Colak (TUR), Yaroslav Vovchok (UKR), Carl Hughes (WAL). 

Third Category 
Arlind Subashi (ALB), Arman Alaberkyan (ARM), Daniel Stauber (AUT), Manuel Wolf (AUT), Yasin Alageyik (BEL), Jiri Bergs (BEL), Farik Keco (BIH), Igor Puzovic (BIH), Volha Pauliuts (BLR), Anatol Ustsuizhanin (BLR), Ivo Tsenov (BUL), Josip Dujmic (CRO), Mislav Dzeko (CRO), Georgios Kozakos (CYP), Nicolas Nicolaou (CYP), Radim Cep (CZE), Filip Nesnera (CZE), Martin Koster (DEN), Jagnar Jakobson (EST), Paavo Kompaa (FIN), Aurelien Uzan (FRA), Zviad Bliadze (GEO), Franziska Bruckner (GER), Christian Gundler (GER), Panagiotis Ntalas (GRE), Annamaria Tolnay (HUN), Peter Zimonyi (HUN), David Berry (IRL), Raafat Al Hamola (ISR), Idan Berenshtein (ISR), Knyaz Amiraslanov (KAZ), Aslan Galayev (KAZ), Turekhan Tursumbayev (KAZ), Florentina Kallaba (KVX), Mantas Pomeckis (LTU), Michael Lima (LUX), Done Ristovski (MKD), Clinton Cassar (MLT), Stephen Vella (MLT), Drazen Vuckevic (MNE), Joern Te Kloeze (NED), Jacob Van Dijke (NED), Telmen Undrakh (NOR), Dominik Cipinski (POL), Damian Grabowski (POL), Katarzyna Netkowska (POL), Liviu Chita (ROU), Bogdan Hanceariuc (ROU), Tatiana Boltneva (RUS), Oliver Nikolic (SRB), Nikola Rabrenovic (SRB), Marco Rothenfluh (SUI), Rastislav Behancin (SVK), Peter Budac (SVK), Martin Matula (SVK), Jernej Petek (SVN), Ademir Avdic (SWE), David Glavonjic (SWE), George Jansizian (SWE), Fatma Tursun (TUR), Yevhen Hordiienko (UKR), Sviatoslav Kliuchnyk (UKR), Denys Kutsyi (UKR), Vasilica Ciuplea (WAL).

UEFA: German referee Stieler promoted to Elite category

The UEFA Referees Committee approved the referee categories for the second half of the season 2020/2021. The changes take effect on 1 January 2021.


Men

Retired from Elite: Pavel Kralovec (CZE, 1977).

Promoted from First Category to Elite: Tobias Stieler (GER, 1981, photo).

Retired from First Category: Aleksei Eskov (RUS, 1978).

Retired/removed from Second Category: Amaury Delerue (FRA, 1977), Georgios Kominis (GRE, 1980), Gediminas Mažeika (LTU, 1978), Dimitar Mečkarovski (MKD, 1975), Marius Avram (ROU, 1979), Martin Strömbergsson (SWE, 1977), Hüseyin Göcek (TUR, 1976), Mete Kalkavan (TUR, 1979).

New FIFA referees entered into Second Category: Peter Bankes (ENG, 1982), Jeremie Pignard (FRA, 1987).

Retired/removed from Third Category: Suren Baliyan (ARM, 1980), Rahim Hasanov (AZE, 1983), Dragan Petrović (BIH, 1981), Admir Sehović (BIH, 1982), Tihomir Pejin (CRO, 1983), Michael Tykgaard (DEN, 1977), Roomer Tarajev (EST, 1980), Ville Nevalainen (FIN, 1984), Giorgi Vadachkoria (GEO, 1977), Eitan Shmuelevitz (ISR, 1978), Aleksandrs Golubevs (LVA, 1981), Alexandru Tean (MDA, 1983), Fyodor Zammit (MLT, 1985), Jovan Kaludjerović (MNE, 1977), Tim Marshall (NIR, 1988), Sebastian Coltescu (ROU, 1977), Danilo Grujić (SRB, 1980), Boris Marhefka (SVK, 1987), Bryn Markham-Jones (WAL, 1986).

New FIFA referees entered into Third Category: Ashot Ghaltakhchyan (ARM, 1992), Henrik Nalbandyan (ARM, 1995), Elcin Masiyev (AZE, 1991), Luka Bilbija (BIH, 1989), Haris Kaljanac (BIH, 1984), Georgi Davidov (BUL, 1985), Dario Bel (CRO, 1988), Ondrej Berka (CZE, 1987), Sandi Putros (DEN, 1987), Joonas Jaanovits (EST, 1991), Mohammed Al-Emara (FIN, 1992), Joni Hyytiä (FIN, 1988), Irakli Kvirikashvili (GEO, 1984), Vasileios Fotias (GRE, 1989), Snir Levi (ISR, 1993), Robertas Valikonis (LTU, 1983), Vitalijs Spasjonnikovs (LVA, 1986), Ion Orlic (MDA, 1989), Igor Stojčevski (MKD, 1989), Ishmael Barbara (MLT, 1993), Philip Farrugia (MLT, 1988), Mileta Scepanović (MNE, 1983), Andrew Davey (NIR, 1982), Iancu Vasilica (POR, 1985), Marian Barbu (ROU, 1988), Andrei Chivulete (ROU, 1986), Pavel Kukuian (RUS, 1982), Milos Milanović (SRB, 1993), Erik Gemzicky (SVK, 1992), Adam Ladeback (SWE, 1992), Abdulkadir Bitigen (TUR, 1981), Yasar Ugurlu (TUR, 1981), Thomas Owen (WAL, 1992).

Women

Retired from Elite: Florence Guillemin (FRA, 1980), Bibiana Steinhaus (GER, 1979).

Promoted from First Category to Elite: Rebecca Welch (ENG, 1983).

Promoted from Second Category to First Category: Hristiana Guteva (BUL, 1990), Shona Shukrula (NED, 1991), Henrikke Nervik (NOR, 1988).

Retired/removed from Second Category: Vesna Budimir (CRO, 1983), Laura Rapp (SWE, 1990).

Retired/removed from Third Category: Aliaksandra Yakushevich (BLR, 1992), Chrysoula Georgiou (CYP, 1987), Sandra Strub (SUI, 1987).

New FIFA referees entered in Third Category: Alena Kanaplianikava (BLR), Kristina Georgieva (BUL), Jelena Kumer (CRO), Zoe Stavrou (CYP), Frederikke Sokjaer (DEN), Minka Vekkeli (FIN), Alexandra Collin (FRA), Franziska Wildfeuer (GER), Reka Molnar (HUN), Marisca Overtoom (NED), Nadezhda Gorinova (RUS), Deborah Anex (SUI), Lovisa Johansson (SWE), Gamze Durmuş (TUR).

Futsal

Retired from Elite: Sasa Tomic (CRO, 1975), Alessandro Malfer (ITA, 1975).

Retired from First Category: Timo Onatsu (FIN, 1973), Balazs Farkas (HUN, 1975), Simon Todorovic (SVN, 1975).

Retired from Second Category: Vitali Rakutski (BLR, 1977), Arsen Nonikashvili (GEO, 1975), Veliko Boskovic (MNE, 1975).

New FIFA referees entered in Second Category: Pablo Delgado (ESP), Giulio Colombin (ITA).

Retired/removed from Third Category: Shota Kukhilava (GEO, 1975), Ekrem Franca (KVX, 1981), David Balzan (MLT, 1986), Sylvester Rodrigues (NED, 1986), Djordje Petrovic (SRB, 1990).

New FIFA referees entered in Third Category: Arlind Subashi (ALB), Knyaz Amiraslanov (KAZ), Anatol Ustsuizhanin (BLR), Mislav Dzeko (CRO), Zviad Bliadze (GEO), Peter Zimonyi (HUN), Florentina Kallaba (KVX), Stephen Vella (MLT), Drazen Vuckevic (MNE), Joern Te Kloeze (NED), Oliver Nikolic (SRB), Jernej Petek (SVN).

Concacaf Champions League 2020 – Semi-finals

19 December 2020 

CD Olimpia – Tigres UANL
Referee: Ivan Barton (SLV, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: David Moran (SLV)
Assistant Referee 2: Geovany Gacia (SLV)
Fourth Official: Ismael Cornejo (SLV)
Reserve AR: Nicholas Anderson (JAM)

Los Angeles FC – Club America
Referee: Juan Calderon (CRC)
Assistant Referee 1: Juan Mora (CRC)
Assistant Referee 2: William Arrieta (CRC)
Fourth Official: Ricardo Montero (CRC)
Reserve AR: Henri Pupiro (NCA)

AFC Champions League Final 2020: Al-Jassim (QAT)

Qatari referee Abdulrahman Al-Jassim has been appointed to officiate the eagerly anticipated 2020 AFC Champions League Final between the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Persepolis and Korea Republic’s Ulsan Hyundai FC on Saturday at the Al Janoub Stadium. Together with assistants and compatriots, Ramzan Al-Naemi and Saoud Al-Maqaleh, the trio will be supported by Video Assistant Referee (VAR), Khamis Al-Marri from Qatar, who will oversee the implementation of the VAR system in the final of an AFC Club Competition for the first time. Al-Jassim has established himself as one of Asia’s finest match officials in recent years having been appointed to several high-profile matches and tournaments, which include the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019, the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2019 Final between Liverpool and Flamengo, the AFC U23 Championship Qatar 2016 Final and the FIFA U-20 World Cup Korea 2017. As a beneficiary of the AFC Project Future programme in 2009 – the predecessor of the ground-breaking AFC Referee Academy – the Qatari made his FIFA World Cup debut in Russia 2018 as the only Asian referee on the VAR match officials list following a similar stint at the FIFA Club World Cup 2017. Al-Jassim and assistant referee Al-Maqaleh were also selected to officiate in the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup as part of the Memorandum of Understanding between the AFC and CONCACAF, where their impressive performances saw them take charge of the Gold Cup Semi-final between Mexico and Haiti. (Source: AFC


19 December 2020 
Persepolis – Ulsan FC 
Referee: Abdulrahman Al-Jassim (QAT) 
Assistant Referee 1: Ramzan Al-Naemi (QAT) 
Assistant Referee 2: Saoud Al-Maqaleh (QAT) 
Fourth Official: Hettikankanamge Perera (SRI) 
Reserve AR: Mohd Muhamad (MAS) 
VAR: Khamis Al-Marri (QAT) 
AVAR 1: Adham Makhadmeh (JOR) 
AVAR 2: Mohd Yaacob (MAS)

Collina named best referee of all time

With the Ballon d’Or not awarded for the year 2020 because of the Covid pandemic, France Football has presented its all-time dream team and has named Collina as the best referee of all time. "When it comes to referees, the first name that comes to mind is his. From his debut in 1977 to his farewell in 2005, Collina wrote the history of football”, motivated France Football. Collina oversaw 240 Serie A games during his career and 109 international matches, including the 2002 World Cup final between Germany and Brazil. He was named the best referee in the world by the IFFHS from 1998 until 2005. Collina was included in the Hall of Fame of Italian football in 2011. 


Referees chosen by France Football
1. Pierluigi Collina (ITA) 
2. Ken Aston (ENG) 
3. Michel Vautrot (FRA) 
4. Markus Merk (GER) 
5. Charles Corver (NED) 
6. Mike Dean (ENG) 
7. Ian Foote (SCO) 
8. Ali Bennaceur (TUN) 
9. Stephanie Frappart (FRA) 
10. Howard Webb (ENG) 

History-making Yamashita revels in refereeing responsibility

History was made when Yoshimi Yamashita, alongside Makoto Bozono and Naomi Teshirogi, took charge of a group match between Myanmar's Yangon United and Cambodia's Naga World in the 2019 AFC Cup. It marked the first time that an all-female team officiated a continental men's match in Asia. The game ended in 2-0 in hosts Yangon's favour but the fixture had a greater resonance than simply the score line. "I felt greater pressure than usual ahead of the match," the 34-year-old told FIFA.com. "I was honoured to be tasked with officiating this match, but I was also aware that I had the responsibility to try my best and do the job well. It was a game which opened a new path for female referees. I had a feeling that this match might be significant for the future of female referees," continued Yamashita. "All that I needed to do was concentrate on my work in the match. I was grateful for the decision made by AFC as well as all those who worked hard to make this happen." 
A local of Tokyo, Yamashita's love affair with the game began when she started playing football following in the footsteps of her older brother as a four-year-old. "I have never dared of dreaming of becoming a professional player but I always wanted to play football," said Yamashita, who works as a gym instructor. “I will play for a lifetime.” She got involved in refereeing as a college student, influenced by the aforementioned Bozono, then a senior player of her college team. "She invited me to join them in refereeing and I thought it was interesting. Who would expect that one day together we would be a match-officials’ team in a Women's World Cup match?" she said, citing the Round of 16 game between Germany and Nigeria in the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France. Yamashita made steady progress as a promising referee and was appointed to control the 2015 Japan Empress Cup final, staged in a sold-out 26,000-capacity Kawasaki Todoroki Stadium. The raucous supporters chanted throughout as NAC Kobe Leonessa edged Albirex Niigata 1-0 with the legendary Homare Sawa scoring the only goal. "It was so memorable for me to officiate a match in front of so many spectators. The fans' passion was vividly felt. I was amazed and couldn't help thinking what a fascinating sport women's football is!" 
Yamashita continued to advance through the ranks and joined the match officials at the 2018 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup in Uruguay, before being tasked with the Germany-Nigeria showdown at France 2019. "My heart was pounding when the players entered the field. It was an experience that I will never forget. I can still remember the players' bright eyes and the enthusiasm throughout the match [from spectators and players]. I think the Women's World Cup is a place where all people involved can demonstrate their passion for the game. The players do their best and showcase their ability representing their countries, while the referees also prove themselves through their performance on the pitch." Yamashita believes communication is a key skill for referees in the modern game. “How to communicate with the players is a challenge for every referee. You need to focus your attention on the refereeing job, but you need to build the relationship with the players. You need to create an atmosphere where the players can focus on their play. In the long run, my goals are to offer my share of contribution to the women’s game. I want to be involved in great games [as a referee] and to make everyone present at the stadiums feel satisfied.”

Source: FIFA

Melo Pereira to head embattled Czech Referees Committee

The Czech Football Association (FACR) said Tuesday it had picked Portuguese ex-referee Vitor Melo Pereira to head its Referees Committee, which has been hit by a match-fixing scandal. The FACR sacked the previous Committee led by Jozef Chovanec, a former Czechoslovakia and Czech Republic international player of PSV Eindhoven fame, in October. The move followed the arrest of deputy FACR head Roman Berbr and another 18 football officials in a police raid on an organised crime group over suspected match-fixing. "At the moment, this is the only way to fix the current situation at the Referees Committee and of referees in general," FACR head Martin Malik said in a statement. "I would like Mr. Melo Pereira to help the Referees Committee resume the status of an expert, transparent and fully independent body as soon as possible," he added. Melo Pereira, who is 63, was on the FIFA referee list for 11 seasons and officiated in the Champions League as well as at the 1998 and 2002 World Cups. 
A 66-year-old former referee, Berbr was taken into custody together with another three Czech officials following the October raid. He stepped down from his position as a result. Berbr held his post since 2013 and according to local media has been pulling the strings in Czech football for years. His former boss, the ex-FACR head Miroslav Pelta, led the FA until he was detained in 2017 on charges of bribery and abuse of power. He is facing up to 12 years in prison if convicted. Local media have for some time implicated Berbr in relation to corruption cases and bullying at the FACR, but he has never been charged. Last week, the FACR cut Pavel Kralovec, who officiates in the Champions League, from the referee list for professional Czech leagues until the end of the year. Kralovec has been implicated in the match-fixing scandal over contacts with Berbr ahead of July's Czech cup final which saw him under fire for errors in favour of winners Sparta Prague. Berbr's wife Dagmar Damkova, the first female referee in the Czech Republic, stepped down from a post on the UEFA referees committee following her husband's arrest. 

Source: AFP

Concacaf Champions League 2020 – Quarter-finals

15-16 December 2020 

CD Olimpia – Montreal Impact
Referee: Ricardo Montero (CRC, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Juan Mora (CRC)
Assistant Referee 2: William Arrieta (CRC)
Fourth Official: Juan Calderon (CRC)

Tigres UANL – New York City FC
Referee: Daneon Parchment (JAM)
Assistant Referee 1: Nicholas Anderson (JAM)
Assistant Referee 2: Henri Pupiro (NCA)
Fourth Official: Reon Radix (GRN)

Atlanta United – Club America
Referee: Ismael Cornejo (SLV)
Assistant Referee 1: David Moran (SLV)
Assistant Referee 2: Geovany Garcia (SLV)
Fourth Official: Ivan Barton (SLV)

Los Angeles FC – Cruz Azul
Referee: Said Martinez (HON)
Assistant Referee 1: Walter Lopez (HON)
Assistant Referee 2: Christian Ramirez (HON)
Fourth Official: Mario Escobar (GUA)

UEFA Women’s Champions League 2020/2021 – Round of 32 (Second Leg)

15-17 December 2020 

Olympique Lyonnais – Juventus
Referee: Sara Persson (SWE, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Camilla Stendahl (SWE)
Assistant Referee 2: Jilan Taher (SWE)
Fourth Official: Lovisa Johansson (SWE)
Referee Observer: Gitte Holm (DEN)

Atletico de Madrid – Servette FC Chênois
Referee: Frida Nielsen (DEN)
Assistant Referee 1: Sidsel Rasmussen (DEN)
Assistant Referee 2: Frederikke Sokjær (DEN)
Fourth Official: Nanna Andersen (DEN)
Referee Observer: Claudine Brohet (BEL)

BIIK Kazygurt – WFC Kharkiv
Referee: Hristiyana Guteva (BUL)
Assistant Referee 1: Ekaterina Marinova (BUL)
Assistant Referee 2: Pavleta Rashkova (BUL)
Fourth Official: Dimitrina Milkova (BUL)
Referee Observer: Olga Tanschi (MDA)

Slavia Praha – ACF Fiorentina
Referee: Tess Olofsson (SWE)
Assistant Referee 1: Josefin Aronsson (SWE)
Assistant Referee 2: Emelie Elfstrand (SWE)
Fourth Official: Pernilla Larsson (SWE)
Referee Observer: Esther Azzopardi Farrugia (MLT)

Paris Saint Germain – Gornik Lęczna
Referee: Jelena Pejković (CRO)
Assistant Referee 1: Sanja Rodjak-Karšić (CRO)
Assistant Referee 2: Ivona Pejić (CRO)
Fourth Official: Sabina Bolić (CRO)
Referee Observer: Ivana Vlaić (BIH)

Manchester City WFC – Göteborg FC
Referee: Katalin Kulcsar (HUN)
Assistant Referee 1: Katalin Török (HUN)
Assistant Referee 2: Judit Gavalla-Kulcsar (HUN)
Fourth Official: Eszter Urbán (HUN)
Referee Observer: Regina Konink-Belksma (NED)

FC Barcelona – PSV Eindhoven Vrouwen
Referee: Ivana Projkovska (MKD)
Assistant Referee 1: Elena Soklevska-Ilievski (MKD)
Assistant Referee 2: Vjolca Izeiri (MKD)
Fourth Official: Irena Velevačkoska (MKD)
Referee Observer: Katarzyna Wierzbowska (POL)

Bayern München – AFC Ajax
Referee: Anastasia Pustovoitova (RUS)
Assistant Referee 1: Ekaterina Kurochkina (RUS)
Assistant Referee 2: Iulia Petrova (RUS)
Fourth Official: Vera Opeykina (RUS)
Referee Observer: Eleni Kyriou (GRE)

Brondby IF – Valerenga FB
Referee: Sandra Bastos (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Olga Almeida (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Catia Tavares (POR)
Fourth Official: Ana Afonso (POR)
Referee Observer: Nelly Viennot (FRA)

VfL Wolfsburg – Spartak Subotica
Referee: Petra Pavlikova (SVK)
Assistant Referee 1: Maria Sukenikova (SVK)
Assistant Referee 2: Miroslava Pastorekova (SVK)
Fourth Official: Zuzana Valentova (SVK)
Referee Observer: Paloma Quintero Siles (ESP)

FC Rosengard – WCF Lanchkhuti
Referee: Shona Shukrula (NED)
Assistant Referee 1: Franca Overtoom (NED)
Assistant Referee 2: Nicolet Bakker (NED)
Fourth Official: Marisca Overtoom (NED)
Referee Observer: Snježana Fočić (CRO)

LSK Kvinner – FC Minsk
Referee: Maria Marotta (ITA)
Assistant Referee 1: Francesca Di Monte (ITA)
Assistant Referee 2: Tiziana Trasciatti (ITA)
Fourth Official: Mario Ferrieri Caputi (ITA)
Referee Observer: Emilia Wnuk (POL)

Fortuna Hjorring – WFC Pomurje
Referee: Iuliana Demetrescu (ROU)
Assistant Referee 1: Mihaela Tepusa (ROU)
Assistant Referee 2: Petruta Iugulescu (ROU)
Fourth Official: Cristina Trandafir (ROU)
Referee Observer: Knarik Grigoryan (ARM)

Chelsea FCW – SL Benfica
Referee: Lina Lehtovaara (FIN)
Assistant Referee 1: Tonja Paavola (FIN)
Assistant Referee 2: Heini Hyvönen (FIN)
Fourth Official: Ifeoma Kulmala (FIN)
Referee Observer: Anja Kunick (GER)

Glasgow City FC – Sparta Praha
Referee: Silvia Domingos (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Vanessa Dias (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Ana Silva (POR)
Fourth Official: Tatiana Martins (POR)
Referee Observer: Sofia Karagiorgi (CYP)

FC Zürich Frauen – St. Pölten Frauen
Referee: Cheryl Foster (WAL)
Assistant Referee 1: Ceri Williams (WAL)
Assistant Referee 2: Victoria Finlay (NIR)
Fourth Official: Louise Thompson (NIR)
Referee Observer: Elke Günther (GER)

Concacaf Champions League 2020 – Final Rounds

The Concacaf Referees Committee has announced the referees and assistant referees that have been selected for the 2020 Concacaf Champions League (SCCL) Final Rounds. The final seven matches of the tournament will be played December 15-22, at Orlando’s Exploria Stadium. The 18 selected match officials have all been active in the 2020 Concacaf League and in their domestic competitions. Each official has been strictly adhering to the Concacaf Sports Science Program, which ensures all referees maintain elite fitness year around and have exhibited excellent on-field performances. Additionally, all match officials have been following a high-frequency Covid-19 testing regime prior to arriving in Orlando, Florida. “I am extremely pleased with the team of referees that has been chosen to officiate these matches. Each has a history of excellence and brings their experience to Concacaf’s flagship club competition. I am confident they will represent the Confederation with elite performances,” said Concacaf Director of Refereeing, Brian Hall. The Concacaf Referees Committee approved the list of participants, who were reviewed and selected by the Concacaf Referee Technical Advisory Team, a cross regional group of refereeing experts. (Source: Concacaf


Referees 
1. Gabriel Calderon (CRC, 1987, photo) 
2. Ricardo Montero (CRC, 1986) 
3. Reon Radix (GRN, 1990) 
4. Mario Escobar (GUA, 1986) 
5. Said Martinez (HON, 1991) 
6. Daneon Parchment (JAM, 1981) 
7. Ismael Cornejo (SLV, 1987) 
8. Ivan Barton (SLV, 1991) 

Assistant Referees 
1. Juan Mora (CRC, 1989) 
2. William Arrieta (CRC, 1983) 
3. Gerson Lopez (GUA, 1983) 
4. Humberto Panjoj (GUA, 1987) 
5. Christian Ramirez (HON, 1988) 
6. Walter Lopez (HON, 1978) 
7. Nicholas Anderson (JAM, 1983) 
8. Henri Pupiro (NCA, 1988) 
9. David Moran (SLV, 1985) 
10. Geovany Garcia (SLV, 1981) 

Referee Assessors 
1. Hector Vergara (CAN) 
2. Leonel Leal (CRC) 
3. Jose Camargo (MEX)

AFC Champions League 2020 – Semi-final (East Region)

13 December 2020 

Ulsan FC – Vissel Kobe
Referee: Nawaf Shukralla (BHR, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Mohamed Salman (BHR)
Assistant Referee 2: Abdulla Al-Rowaimi (BHR)
Fourth Official: Hettikamkanamge Perera (SRI)

CONMEBOL Libertadores 2020 – Quarter-finals (Second Leg)

15-17 December 2020

Palmeiras – Libertad
Referee: Jesus Valenzuela (VEN, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Jorge Urrego (VEN)
Assistant Referee 2: Tulio Moreno (VEN)
Fourth Official: Alexis Herrera (VEN)
VAR: John Ospina (COL)
AVAR: Alexander Guzman (COL)
Referee Assessor: Regildenia Moura (BRA)
Supervisor: Roberto Perassi (BRA)

Racing – Boca Juniors
Referee: Esteban Ostojich (URU)
Assistant Referee 1: Nicolas Taran (URU)
Assistant Referee 2: Martin Soppi (URU)
Fourth Official: Gustavo Tejera (URU)
VAR: Mauro Vigliano (ARG)
AVAR: Juan Belatti (ARG)
Referee Assessor: Angel Sanchez (ARG)
Supervisor: Hernan Maidana (ARG)

Santos – Gremio
Referee: Wilmar Roldan (COL)
Assistant Referee 1: Wilmar Navarro (COL)
Assistant Referee 2: Dionisio Ruiz (COL)
Fourth Official: Carlos Betancur (COL)
VAR: Nicolas Gallo (COL)
AVAR: John Leon (COL)
Referee Assessor: Emerson Carvalho (BRA)
Supervisor: Ednilson Corona (BRA)

Nacional – River Plate
Referee: Roberto Tobar (CHI)
Assistant Referee 1: Christian Schiemann (CHI)
Assistant Referee 2: Claudio Rios (CHI)
Fourth Official: Julio Bascunan (CHI)
VAR: Angelo Hermosilla (CHI)
AVAR: Raul Orellana (CHI)
Referee Assessor: Juan Cardellino (URU)
Supervisor: Dario Ubriaco (URU)

CONMEBOL Sudamericana 2020 – Quarter-finals (Second Leg)

15-17 December 2020

Universidad Catolica – Velez Sarsfield
Referee: Leodan Gonzalez (URU, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Richard Trinidad (URU)
Assistant Referee 2: Carlos Barreiro (URU)
Fourth Official: Andres Matonte (URU)
VAR: Andres Cunha (URU)
AVAR: Gery Vargas (BOL)
Referee Assessor: Barbra Bastias (CHI)
Supervisor: Jorge Osorio (CHI)

Defensa y Justicia – Bahia
Referee: Eber Aquino (PAR)
Assistant Referee 1: Eduardo Cardozo (PAR)
Assistant Referee 2: Jose Cuevas (PAR)
Fourth Official: Mario Diaz de Vivar (PAR)
VAR: Juan Benitez (PAR)
AVAR: Milcides Saldivar (PAR)
Referee Assessor: Ricardo Casas (ARG)
Supervisor: Sergio Viola (ARG)

Coquimbo Unido – Junior
Referee: Victor Carrillo (PER)
Assistant Referee 1: Jonny Bossio (PER)
Assistant Referee 2: Michael Orue (PER)
Fourth Official: Augusto Aragon (ECU)
VAR: Carlos Orbe (ECU)
AVAR: Christian Lescano (ECU)
Referee Assessor: Francisco Mondria (CHI)
Supervisor: Patricio Polic (CHI)

Independiente – Lanus
Referee: Raphael Claus (BRA)
Assistant Referee 1: Marcelo Van Gasse (BRA)
Assistant Referee 2: Danilo Manis (BRA)
Fourth Official: Rodolpho Toski (BRA)
VAR: Rafael Traci (BRA)
AVAR: Bruno Arleu (BRA)
Referee Assessor: Gustavo Rossi (ARG)
Supervisor: Sabrina Lois (ARG)

AFC Champions League 2020 – Quarter-finals (East Region)

10 December 2020

Vissel Kobe – Suwon Bluewings
Referee: Adham Makhadmeh (JOR, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Ahmed Al Roalle (JOR)
Assistant Referee 2: Mohammad Al Kalaf (JOR)
Fourth Official: Abdulrahman Al-Jassim (QAT)

Ulsan FC – Beijing FC
Referee: Mohammed Abdulla (UAE)
Assistant Referee 1: Mohamed Al Hammadi (UAE)
Assistant Referee 2: Hasan Al Mahri (UAE)
Fourth Official: Hettikamkanamge Perera (SRI)

UEFA Europa League 2020/2021 – Group Stage (Matchday 6)

10 December 2020

BSC Young Boys – CFR Cluj
Referee: Benoît Bastien (FRA, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Hicham Zakrani (FRA)
Assistant Referee 2: Frederic Haquette (FRA)
Fourth Official: Karim Abed (FRA)
Referee Observer: Andrejs Sipailo (LVA)

Rapid Wien – Molde FK
Referee: Marco Guida (ITA)
Assistant Referee 1: Ciro Carbone (ITA)
Assistant Referee 2: Daniele Bindoni (ITA)
Fourth Official: Fabio Maresca (ITA)
Referee Observer: Neale Barry (ENG)

CSKA Sofia – AS Roma
Referee: Irfan Peljto (BIH)
Assistant Referee 1: Senad Ibrisimbegović (BIH)
Assistant Referee 2: Davor Beljo (BIH)
Fourth Official: Haris Kaljanac (BIH)
Referee Observer: Haim Jakov (ISR)

Dundalk – Arsenal
Referee: Ivan Bebek (CRO)
Assistant Referee 1: Goran Pataki (CRO)
Assistant Referee 2: Bojan Zobenica (CRO)
Fourth Official: Igor Pajac (CRO)
Referee Observer: Georgi Yordanov (BUL)

Bayer Leverkusen – Slavia Praha
Referee: Anastasios Sidiropoulos (GRE)
Assistant Referee 1: Polychronis Kostaras (GRE)
Assistant Referee 2: Lazaros Dimitriadis (GRE)
Fourth Official: Ioannis Papadopoulos (GRE)
Referee Observer: Erol Ersoy (TUR)

Hapoel Beer Sheva – OGC Nice
Referee: Kristo Tohver (EST)
Assistant Referee 1: Silver Koiv (EST)
Assistant Referee 2: Aron Härsing (EST)
Fourth Official: Juri Frischer (EST)
Referee Observer: Sokol Jareci (ALB)

Standard de Liege – SL Benfica
Referee: Aleksei Kulbakov (BLR)
Assistant Referee 1: Dmitri Zhuk (BLR)
Assistant Referee 2: Oleg Maslyanko (BLR)
Fourth Official: Viktor Shimusik (BLR)
Referee Observer: Marinus Koopman (NED)

Lech Poznan – Rangers FC
Referee: Jose Sanchez Martinez (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Raul Cabanero Martinez (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Inigo Prieto Lopez (ESP)
Fourth Official: Jose Munuera Montero (ESP)
Referee Observer: Vladimir Antonov (MDA)

PSV Eindhoven – Omonia FC
Referee: Kevin Clancy (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: Graeme Stewart (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: David Roome (SCO)
Fourth Official: Greg Aitken (SCO)
Referee Observer: Sergejus Slyva (LTU)

PAOK FC – Granada CF
Referee: John Beaton (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: Daniel McFarlane (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: Alan Mulvanny (SCO)
Fourth Official: David Munro (SCO)
Referee Observer: Vlado Svilokos (CRO)

SSC Napoli – Real Sociedad
Referee: Orel Grinfeld (ISR)
Assistant Referee 1: Roy Hassan (ISR)
Assistant Referee 2: Idan Yarkoni (ISR)
Fourth Official: Gal Leibovitz (ISR)
Referee Observer: Alexandru Deaconu (ROU)

HNK Rijeka – AZ Alkmaar
Referee: Sergei Karasev (RUS)
Assistant Referee 1: Igor Demeshko (RUS)
Assistant Referee 2: Dmitri Mosyakin (RUS)
Fourth Official: Kirill Levnikov (RUS)
Referee Observer: Gevorg Hovhannisyan (ARM)

Leicester City – AEK Athens
Referee: Lawrence Visser (BEL)
Assistant Referee 1: Thibaud Nijssen (BEL)
Assistant Referee 2: Rien Vanyzere (BEL)
Fourth Official: Bram Van Driessche (BEL)
Referee Observer: Hugh Dallas (SCO)

SC Braga – Zorya Luhansk
Referee: Daniel Stefanski (POL)
Assistant Referee 1: Dawid Golis (POL)
Assistant Referee 2: Krzysztof Myrmus (POL)
Fourth Official: Damian Sylwestrzak (POL)
Referee Observer: Bernardino Gonzalez Vazquez (ESP)

Sparta Praha – AC Milan
Referee: Daniel Siebert (GER)
Assistant Referee 1: Jan Seidel (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Rafael Foltyn (GER)
Fourth Official: Daniel Schlager (GER)
Referee Observer: Kenneth Clark (SCO)

Celtic FC – LOSC Lille
Referee: Fabio Verissimo (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Bruno Rodrigues (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Pedro Martins (POR)
Fourth Official: Antonio Nobre (POR)
Referee Observer: Stephen Lodge (ENG)

Maccabi Tel Aviv – Sivasspor
Referee: Andris Treimanis (LVA)
Assistant Referee 1: Haralds Gudermanis (LVA)
Assistant Referee 2: Martins Svipsts (LVA)
Fourth Official: Aleksandrs Golubevs (LVA)
Referee Observer: Kyros Vassaras (GRE)

Villarreal CF – Qarabag FK
Referee: Mykola Balakin (UKR)
Assistant Referee 1: Andrii Skrypka (UKR)
Assistant Referee 2: Semen Shlonchak (UKR)
Fourth Official: Yevhenii Aranovskiy (UKR)
Referee Observer: Joao Ferreira (POR)

Tottenham Hotspur – Royal Antwerp
Referee: Jesúus Gil Manzano (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Diego Barbero Sevilla (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Angel Nevado Rodriguez (ESP)
Fourth Official: Guillermo Cuadra Fernandez (ESP)
Referee Observer: Lucilio Batista (POR)

PFC Ludogorets – LASK
Referee: Vitali Meshkov (RUS)
Assistant Referee 1: Aleksei Lunev (RUS)
Assistant Referee 2: Dmitry Safyan (RUS)
Fourth Official: Vladimir Moskalev (RUS)
Referee Observer: Karel Vidlak (CZE)

GNK Dinamo – CSKA Moskva
Referee: Tiago Martins (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Luis Campos (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Pedro Almeida (POR)
Fourth Official: Hugo Miguel (POR)
Referee Observer: Ray Ellingham (WAL)

Wolfsberger AC – Feyenoord
Referee: Pawel Raczkowski (POL)
Assistant Referee 1: Pawel Sokolnicki (POL)
Assistant Referee 2: Tomasz Listkiewicz (POL)
Fourth Official: Piotr Lasyk (POL)
Referee Observer: Andreas Schluchter (SUI)

TSG Hoffenheim – KAA Gent
Referee: Anastasios Papapetrou (GRE)
Assistant Referee 1: Tryfon Petropoulos (GRE)
Assistant Referee 2: Iordanis Aptosoglou (GRE)
Fourth Official: Angelos Evangelou (GRE)
Referee Observer: Fredy Fautrel (FRA)

Slovan Liberec – Crvena Zvezda
Referee: Mattias Gestranius (FIN)
Assistant Referee 1: Jan-Peter Aravirta (FIN)
Assistant Referee 2: Mikko Alakare (FIN)
Fourth Official: Antti Munukka (FIN)
Referee Observer: Ichko Lozev (BUL)

Champions League referee Kralovec implicated in match-fixing case

Czech referee Pavel Kralovec, who officiates in the Champions League, has been implicated in a local match-fixing scandal, Czech media said Wednesday. The case involves former Czech Football Association (FACR) deputy head Roman Berbr, who has been in custody over suspected match-fixing since October. Citing police wiretaps, the DNES broadsheet said Berbr had called Kralovec ahead of July’s Czech Cup final, in which Sparta Prague beat Slovan Liberec 2-1 to reach the Europa League group stage. “Very simply, I need just one political thing, OK? You will understand. Josef Krula stopped by on Monday,” Berbr said, according to the wiretap. Krula is Sparta’s sports manager and a former referee. Kralovec, who answered that he did understand, came under fire after the game as he had notably refused to send off Sparta midfielder Martin Frydek for stepping on an opponent, despite calls from the video referee. 
On Tuesday night, the 43-year-old Kralovec managed the Champions League game pitting Chelsea against Krasnodar. The FACR said Wednesday it had cut Kralovec from the list of referees for professional Czech leagues until the end of the year. Sparta, who have lost a chance to advance from the Europa League Group H also comprising AC Milan, Lille and Celtic Glasgow, have denied any wrongdoing and said they want “thorough investigation” of the case. Berbr was one of 19 people detained by police in October as part of an organized group in the match-fixing case, four of whom have ended up in custody. He stepped down from his position as a result. A 66-year-old former referee, Berbr held his post since 2013 and according to local media has been pulling the strings in Czech football for years. Media have made allegations over Berbr in relation to corruption cases and bullying at the FACR, but he has never been charged. His wife Dagmar Damkova, the first female referee in the Czech Republic, stepped down from a post on the UEFA Referees Committee following the charges. 

UEFA Women’s Champions League 2020/2021 – Round of 32 (First Leg)

9-10 December 2020 

Juventus – Olympique Lyonnais
Referee: Riem Hussein (GER, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Sina Diekmann (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Melissa Joos (GER)
Fourth Official: Franziska Wildfeuer (GER)
Referee Observer: Wendy Toms (ENG)

WCF Lanchkhuti – FC Rosengard
Referee: Reelika Turi (EST)
Assistant Referee 1: Karolin Kaivoja (EST)
Assistant Referee 2: Anni Rahula (EST)
Fourth Official: Luisa Klaar (EST)
Referee Observer: Blaženka Logarušić (CRO)

FC Minsk – LSK Kvinner
Referee: Sabina Bolić (CRO)
Assistant Referee 1: Ivona Pejić (CRO)
Assistant Referee 2: Gordana Katušić (CRO)
Fourth Official: Jelena Pejković (CRO)
Referee Observer: Galina Doneva (BUL)

WFC Kharkiv – BIIK Kazygur
Referee: Justina Lavrenovaite-Perez (LTU)
Assistant Referee 1: Ieva Ramanauskiene (LTU)
Assistant Referee 2: Gerda Eidinzonaite (LTU)
Fourth Official: Jurgita Macikunyte (LTU)
Referee Observer: Maria Luisa Villa (ESP)

WFC Pomurje – Fortuna Hjorring
Referee: Ewa Augustyn (POL)
Assistant Referee 1: Paulina Baranowska (POL)
Assistant Referee 2: Katarzyna Wasiak (POL)
Fourth Official: Katarzyna Lisiecka-Sęk (POL)
Referee Observer: Ingrid Jonsson (SWE)

Spartak Subotica – VfL Wolfsburg
Referee: Melis Ozcigdem (TUR)
Assistant Referee 1: Deybet Gök (TUR)
Assistant Referee 2: Betül Yilmaz (TUR)
Fourth Official: Neslihan Muratdagi (TUR)
Referee Observer: Silvia Spinelli (ITA)

Sparta Praha – Glasgow City
Referee: Eszter Urban (HUN)
Assistant Referee 1: Judit Gavalla-Kulcsar (HUN)
Assistant Referee 2: Noemi Barath (HUN)
Fourth Official: Reka Molnar (HUN)
Referee Observer: Christine Frai (GER)

SL Benfica – Chelsea WFC
Referee: Esther Staubli (SUI)
Assistant Referee 1: Susanne Küng (SUI)
Assistant Referee 2: Emilie Aubry (SUI)
Fourth Official: Michele Schmölzer (SUI)
Referee Observer: Dilan Gökçek (TUR)

Göteborg FC – Manchester City WFC
Referee: Jana Adamkova (CZE)
Assistant Referee 1: Gabriela Hanakova (CZE)
Assistant Referee 2: Zuzana Špindlerova (CZE)
Fourth Official: Lucie Šulcova (CZE)
Referee Observer: Irina Mîrț (ROU)

PSV Eindhoven Vrouwen – FC Barcelona
Referee: Olga Zadinova (CZE)
Assistant Referee 1: Lucie Ratajova (CZE)
Assistant Referee 2: Nikola Šafrankova (CZE)
Fourth Official: Helena Salkova (CZE)
Referee Observer: Katarzyna Wierzbowska (POL)

St. Pölten Frauen – FC Zürich Frauen
Referee: Lina Lehtovaara (FIN)
Assistant Referee 1: Lotta Vuorio (FIN)
Assistant Referee 2: Jenni Mahlamäki (FIN)
Fourth Official: Jelena Kumer (CRO)
Referee Observer: Antonia Kokotou (GRE)

Servette FC Chênois – Atletico de Madrid
Referee: Henrikke Nervik (NOR)
Assistant Referee 1: Monica Lokkeberg (NOR)
Assistant Referee 2: Elisabeth Thoresen (NOR)
Fourth Official: Ingvild Aarland (NOR)
Referee Observer: Gyöngyi Gaal (HUN)

ACF Fiorentina – Slavia Praha
Referee: Rebecca Welch (ENG)
Assistant Referee 1: Sian Massey-Ellis (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Emily Carney (ENG)
Fourth Official: Abigail Byrne (ENG)
Referee Observer: Ana Minić (SRB)

Gornik Leczna – Paris Saint Germain
Referee: Lorraine Clark (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: Kylie Cockburn (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: Vikki Allan (SCO)
Fourth Official: Vikki Robertson (SCO)
Referee Observer: Jenny Palmqvist (SWE)

Valerenga FB – Brondby IF
Referee: Desiree Grundbacher (SUI)
Assistant Referee 1: Linda Schmid (SUI)
Assistant Referee 2: Sabrina Keinersdorfer (SUI)
Fourth Official: Deborah Anex (SUI)
Referee Observer: Carolina De Boeck (BEL)

AFC Ajax – Bayern München
Referee: Pernilla Larsson (SWE)
Assistant Referee 1: Almira Spahić (SWE)
Assistant Referee 2: Julia Magnusson (SWE)
Fourth Official: Lovisa Johansson (SWE)
Referee Observer: Miroslava Migalova (SVK)

“Man in the Middle”: Europe's referees return to play

In the final instalment of the series, episode four picks up the story where it left off in episode three, with UEFA's plans to implement the 'Return to Play' project – which culminated in a unique UEFA Champions League final tournament in Lisbon in August. Equipment and technology also play an important role in refereeing. The spotlight turns to two key partners, as we hear from Hawk-Eye and Macron on how they deliver equipment and clothing to help the officials concentrate on the task at hand. We hear too from referees involved in the Lisbon tournament, in particular Italian Daniele Orsato who took charge of the final between Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern München, while UEFA Referees Committee chairman Roberto Rosetti gives his verdict on the referees' excellent showing in Portugal. 
Roberto Rosetti: "UEFA believed that it was crucial to come back onto the field of play. And UEFA took action immediately. UEFA decided to postpone the Euro, and this was so important for the national associations because, in this way, they could restart and finish their championships. And then UEFA could restart the competitions." 
Anthony Taylor: "The build-up to a Champions League quarter-final is really exciting. There's less atmosphere in terms of spectators [owing to this year's measures], but once that warm-up starts, the real important thing from my point of view is that both me and the rest of the team are solely focused on what lies ahead of us… the success of me as an individual referee isn't just down to me, it's down to everybody else in the team." 
Antonio Mateu Lahoz: "Nowadays, the most important thing is that we are healthy. We had the chance to go to Lisbon. We know that football gives us happiness and football is able to demonstrate our values. And for us to take part in it… I feel proud." 
Daniele Orsato: "It was fantastic. I had a fantastic experience. The Champions League final was my dream, and now it's a reality; it's no longer a dream." 
Björn Kuipers: "We have a family business… Let's say I had an agenda that was really full of obligations. And when coronavirus came, there was no football… there was only time for my family. And I saw I gave too little time in previous years to my children. Away from refereeing, I'm a businessman, and I should be more of a family man. So in the future, I will change this a little bit. I will be more a family man and less a businessman." 
Roberto Rosetti: "The results were clear for everyone… of course, we had some controversial situations - but we had no important mistakes. And in the end, no one really talked about the referees".

Watch episode 4

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Watch episode 2

Watch episode 1

Source: UEFA