The FIFA Referees Committee on Thursday announced the lists with the names of the selected match officials for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
36 referees, 69 assistant referees, and 24 video match officials (VMOs) have been chosen in close cooperation with the six confederations, based on their quality and the performances delivered at FIFA tournaments as well as at other international and domestic competitions in recent years.
Among the selected, for the first time in the history of the FIFA World Cup, the FIFA Referees Committee has also appointed three women's referees and three women's assistant referees.
"We are very happy that with Stephanie Frappart from France, Salima Mukansanga from Rwanda, and Yoshimi Yamashita from Japan, as well as assistant referees Neuza Back from Brazil, Karen Diaz Medina from Mexico, and Kathryn Nesbitt from the USA, we have been able to call up female match officials for the first time in the history of a FIFA World Cup," said the chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee Pierluigi Collina.
"This concludes a long process that began several years ago with the deployment of female referees at FIFA men's junior and senior tournaments. In this way, we clearly emphasise that it is quality that counts for us and not gender. I would hope that in the future, the selection of elite women's match officials for important men's competitions will be perceived as something normal and no longer as sensational. They deserve to be at the FIFA World Cup because they constantly perform at a really high level, and that's the important factor for us," concluded Pierluigi Collina.
Massimo Busacca, FIFA's Director of Refereeing, ensures the match officials will receive all the necessary support by FIFA, as their preparation is paramount.
"Thanks to an innovative tracking and support programme, all the match officials can be supervised by FIFA referees' instructors even more closely and intensively than in previous years. This is a very important factor, from which we expect considerable improvements and progress in view of the FIFA World Cup 2022," explained Busacca.
The selected match officials will participate in early summer in several seminars (Asuncion, Madrid and Doha), reviewing and analysing video clips of real match situations, and taking part in practical training sessions with players, which will be filmed to enable participants to receive instant feedback from the instructors. (ANI)