A spectacular referee change is apparently in the offing in European football. Cuneyt Cakir could switch from the Turkish to the Swiss association. Former Turkish referee and long-time Cakir’s colleague Deniz Coban reported in his column for the newspaper Fanatik on Wednesday that UEFA elite referee Cakir had received an offer from the Swiss association. Consequently, the Turkish FA has received an official request to let Cakir referee games in the Swiss Super League this season. An answer from the TFF is still pending.
The background to the possible change of association is the referee earthquake in Turkey at the beginning of March. The Turkish FA suspended several top referees with immediate effect. Cuneyt Cakir was one of them. The referee committee of the association justified the process at the time with an upheaval that they wanted to initiate. There was no criminal background. Last week, the Turkish Federation’s Appeals Committee granted an appeal by the referees concerned and declared the suspension of the referees to be unlawful, so they can continue to do their job. But despite this verdict, referee chairman Ferhat Gündogdu insists on his point of view and does not want to use these referees. A senior board member of the Turkish association therefore resigned on Wednesday. The suspension is particularly bitter for Cakir. The experienced referee is about to take part in his sixth major tournament, having officiated at three European Championships and two World Cups and was also considered for the 2022 World Cup. Without appearances in the domestic league, participation in the World Cup is not possible. In Switzerland, Cakir could get the necessary assignments. In addition, his assistants, who have been suspended in Turkey, would also move to Switzerland. It is still unclear whether the Turkish FA will agree. (Source: All News Press)
Ukrainian FIFA assistant referee Maryna Striletska went to Switzerland and already had the opportunity to referee matches in the third division. “At the beginning of the war, I went to my sister in Switzerland, but later the leadership of the UAF Referee Committee in our social group tried to offer help to everyone. And I am very grateful to the chairman of the committee, Luciano Luci, who, knowing that I was in Basel, agreed that I could continue to work in my profession and retain the appropriate qualifications. There is no word "refugee" here, just people who came here because of the war and fall into the category of people with status S. Therefore, having completed all the documents, in two weeks you can get help to rent housing and get food. Since I haven't refereed matches for almost a month, there was a little excitement. But, as they say, everything started to work out with the starting whistle. The level of games corresponds to our second, and sometimes the first league. Mostly everyone here speaks German, which I do not speak. I can speak English. War helps, but colleagues often forget about it, and then correct themselves (smiles). I receive referee fees for each game, according to the local conditions. But this is not the main thing for me; it is important that I can continue to work. They all sympathize with our grief. But, because Switzerland is a neutral country, people are just learning to help the suffering. I know that there are many families here who have a room or two available, so they invite people to their place. All Swiss hope that the war will end soon, because there is nothing better than a peaceful sky overhead. I start every day with news from Ukraine, I really want to go home. My suitcase is always packed”, said Striletska. (Source: UAF)
On 20 March 2022, Kateryna Monzul refereed the match Inter – Sampdoria in the 17th round of the women's Serie A, at the initiative of the Italian Federation. Before the match, Monzul entered the field with the flag of Ukraine, drawing the attention of the world community to the terrible war in her country. Among the guests at the stadium were the chairman of the UAF Referees Committee Luciano Luci and the chief referee expert of the Ukrainian Football Association Nicola Rizzoli. Another Ukrainian former referee received a special invitation: Sergei Becker, who recently lost his father. In November 2018, Becker was appointed to the Nations League match between Greece and Estonia in Athens. Unfortunately, he had a stroke on the eve of the match. The doctors managed to save his life and Becker is currently working as an observer in the first division of the PFL. (Source: UAF)