Bouchardeau – a strong personality of the African refereeing

Former World Cup referee Lucien Bouchardeau has died on 20 February 2018, at the age of 56, following a heart attack. He started to referee in 1987 and earned his FIFA badge in 1993. Lucien Bouchardeau is to date the only referee to have represented Niger at a World Cup. It was in 1998 in France. FIFA entrusted him with the group match between Italy and Chile (2-2), when he awarded a controversial penalty kick awarded to Italy following a handball by the Chilean Fuentes. Bouchardeau justified his decision in an Italian newspaper and that ended his participation at the World Cup, FIFA prohibiting any speech in the media. Close to Joseph Blatter, president of FIFA from 1998 to 2015, Lucien Bouchardeau said three years ago in an interview with So Foot that Issa Hayatou, former president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) had "ruined his career". His national federation did not spare him either. "My career has been shortened by CAF and my federation, so instead of going to three World Cups, I only had one. When Hayatou ran against Blatter in the 2002 FIFA elections, I became the enemy of the African confederation because I got on well with Blatter", explained Bouchardeau in that interview.
Two African Cups of Nations (1996 and 1998) including a semi-final (Zambia-Tunisia) in 1996, a participation in the 1997 FIFA Confederations Cup in Saudi Arabia, where he refereed three games, including the match for the third place (Czech Republic-Uruguay), Lucien Bouchardeau also took part in the Atlanta Summer Olympics in 1996. In 2001, he resigned, although he still had five years of potential refereeing, as a protest following the non-selection of any referee from Niger for the 2002 African Cup of Nations in Mali and the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea. His son, Issa Bouchardeau, followed in his father's footsteps by becoming a referee.

Source: Arbitrage57

Brazil: Shocking brawl and game abandoned after 9 red cards

A Brazilian football match between Vitoria and Bahia was abandoned with 11 minutes remaining after the hosts had six players sent off in a game marked by a mass punch-up between players from both sides. The score in the Bahia state championship clash between the two local rivals was 1-1 when Bruno Bispo became the ninth player in all, and the fifth from Vitoria, to be shown the red card. With teams requiring a minimum of seven players, the referee was forced to abandon the game.
Denilson opened the scoring for Vitoria after 33 minutes, but Vinicius levelled with a penalty kick four minutes into the second half. He celebrated with a provocative dance in front of the Vitoria supporters, which sparked outrage between the home fans and players. The situation escalated rapidly, as Vitoria players came racing over and a nasty brawl developed behind the goal. Punches were thrown from both sides and five players were sent off, three from Bahia and two from Vitoria. It took 16 minutes for the situation to calm down. However, tensions were still running high as the referee sent off two more players, one from each side, just minutes later. The aggressive tensions quickly spread to the stands, resulting in some ugly scenes. With 13 minutes left, a fourth Vitoria player was sent off and Bispo responded stupidly by kicking the ball away and forcing the referee into awarding him his second yellow and a match-ending red card. A sporting court in Brazil will now decide what action to take over the indiscipline. It is expected that Bahia will be awarded a 3-0 victory.

CAF Super Cup 2018: Sikazwe (ZAM)

The Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system will be used for the first time in an African competitive game during the CAF Super Cup clash between Wydad Athletic Club (Morocco) and TP Mazembe (DR Congo) on Saturday at the Complexe Mohamed V in Casablanca. The green light has been given by the International Football Association Board (IFAB) and FIFA for the competitive trial in the one-off match featuring the winner of the CAF Champions League 2017 against the holder of the CAF Confederation Cup 2017. This follows impressive results from a series of mock-up and offline sessions during the recent African Nations Championship Morocco 2018 under the supervision of FIFA experts. It was deployed in matches in Casablanca, Marrakech and Tangiers. “It is a historic moment for African football. I’m proud that Africa has taken the initiative to embrace the latest technology towards the development of football and I’m positive the impact will be felt at all levels of the game”, said CAF general secretary Amr Fahmy. During CHAN, the selected match officials underwent vigorous training sessions, theoretical and practical, to acquaint themselves with the technology that has been described as a game-changer for decision-making in football. “Our motto for the VAR is to minimise interference and maximise benefits. Following the successes during the offline sessions at CHAN, I’m optimistic that we are ready to use VAR in major CAF competitions. Africa cannot always be left out on the usage of technology in football and I’m impressed by the support from the various stakeholders to make it happen. The good news is that African referees, who are familiar with the VAR following their participation at FIFA tournaments, will be in charge during the Super Cup”, CAF Refereeing Manager Eddy Maillet added. It will be recalled that the CAF Referees Committee at its meeting on 27 November 2017 approved the usage of the latest technology in CAF competitions. (Source: CAF)


24 February 2018
Wydad Casablanca – TP Mazembe
Referee: Janny Sikazwe (ZAM)
Assistant Referee 1: Jerson Dos Santos (ANG)
Assistant Referee 2: Zakhele Siwela (RSA)

100 instructors attending the FIFA Referee Technical & Fitness seminar

The Seminar for FIFA Referee Technical & Fitness Instructors brings together 100 instructors from all over the world to prepare for the FIFA refereeing activities in 2018. During the five days, instructors will take part in theoretical and practical sessions to improve their knowledge, share ideas and expertise, and study the latest trends in the refereeing world, to achieve a uniform interpretation and application of the Laws of the Game. The seminar aims to update the instructors with the latest teaching materials, fitness data and results, and enhance their knowledge on fitness and technical training and evaluation.
The opening ceremony was held at the InterContinental Hotel Doha and was attended by Pierluigi Collina, Chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee, Hani Ballan, Vice-Chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee, Chairman of AFC Referees Committee and Chairman of QFA Referees Committee, Massimo Busacca, Head of the FIFA Refereeing Department, and Neji Jouini, Executive Director of the QFA Referees Committee. Speaking at the opening ceremony, Collina said: “The best men and women referees in the world were here in Doha over the last few weeks, and the referees did an excellent job of under the leadership of Busacca. Today we have the referees who we can count on in important competitions, but we need to also focus on future referees.” Collina added: “We told the referees in the last few weeks that they have to set an example for the new generation of referees, and that we would be happy if each of them could help the younger referees by developing their skills. We have to pay attention to the future of the referees and this is why we are here. We have to help new referees to develop their skills and take part in advanced workshops, and the only way we can do that is through the instructors.” Collina expressed his confidence in the instructors’ role as they play a huge role in the future of the refereeing world and football because they possess the commitment and experience and have a great responsibility. He is confident that each instructor can be trusted and thanked them for their commitment. Ballan said: “Collina addressed your responsibilities towards the referees and what we must do to develop the referees. When it comes to instructors, I always remember Stephen Covey’s book titled “7 habits of highly effective people”. I was influenced by the first two habits, first one being to influence others around us and that is what we do as instructors. We do not just expect reactions but we train the referees to be ready for any situation, and this is important for us as fitness and technical instructors, we must allow the referees to learn through application. The second habit that influenced me to is to put in mind the goal we aspire to achieve, and the final product for us is the referees, who we appreciate and respect their efforts as they are a diamond that we must protect. In order for referees to excel, we do this by determining our priorities and our tasks and how we can do things differently and offer them different ways to develop”. Busacca said: “The reason we were here again is because we had wonderful training sessions to train men and women candidate referees for the Russia World Cup and for the Women’s World Cup in France. We will see positive results in the remainder of this year and must tell the referees that we have to work accordingly by setting clear goals and in order to achieve these goals we must hope to achieve positive results”.

Referee Petrescu returns after brain surgery

Romanian FIFA referee Radu Petrescu, 35, completed the UEFA CORE Programme and was attempting to climb the refereeing ladder when he received unexpected news. On 12 July 2017, he refereed Dundalk – Rosenborg in the second preliminary round of the UEFA Champions League. After that match he felt pain in the back of his head, consulted a medical specialist and was recommended urgent brain surgery. The medical intervention was successful and was followed by a very strict and intensive recovery.
He passed the FIFA fitness test a few weeks ago and recently refereed a domestic friendly game, supervised by Kyros Vassaras, chairman of the Romanian Referees Committee and member of the UEFA Referees Committee. He was pleased with Petrescu’s recovery and will support his return to refereeing in the national competitions.

Source: ScoalaDeArbitri / GSP

Clattenburg set to make stunning return to England

Express Sport understands talks are underway over a deal which would bring one of the world’s most respected officials back to the country. It is at this stage unclear as to which competition Clattenburg is being lined up to referee. But sources close to the situation claim Clattenburg is open to returning to England to ref - 12 months after he left the country to work for the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF). In his new role as the country’s Head of Refereeing, Clattenburg has combined taking charge of matches with helping to improve the standard of officials in the country. But things are far different in Saudi than they are in England. The standard of football is a world away from what it is in England and he last month had to call a stop to Saudi King's cup clash in extra time when Adhaan was recited in mosques surrounding the stadium. There is no suggestion that Clattenburg, 42, will leave the well-paid job he has in Saudi Arabia permanently. But the option remains for him to appear at one-off matches or longer competitions.
Clattenburg took charge of 292 Premier League matches with his last coming in April 2017 when West Brom played Leicester. He officiated the men's gold medal match between Brazil and Mexico at the London 2012 Olympic Games and then made history four years later when he became the first man to take charge of the FA Cup, Champions League and European Championship finals in the same year. Clattenburg hit the headlines last month when he made the astonishing claim that he allowed Tottenham to "self-destruct" in the infamous 2016 Battle of the Bridge. Clattenburg took charge of Spurs' bad-tempered 2-2 draw at Chelsea in 2016, which saw Pochettino's team concede the crown to Leicester. Needing a win to stay in the race, Tottenham lost a 2-0 lead at Stamford Bridge as the referee booked nine of their players. He claimed he went into the match with a "game plan" to avoid any negative. "I didn't want blame headlines and blame for Spurs losing the title", Clattenburg told NBC's Men in Blazers podcast: "I allowed Spurs to self-destruct so all the media went for the title 'Tottenham lost the title'. If I had sent three players off from Tottenham, what are the headlines? 'Clattenburg cost Tottenham the title'. It was pure theatre that Tottenham self-destructed against Chelsea and Leicester won the title. I certainly benefited the game by my style of refereeing. Some referees would have played by the book. Tottenham would have been down to seven or eight players and probably lost and they would've been looking for an excuse. But I didn't give them an excuse, because my game plan was to let them lose the title".

Source: Express

UEFA Europa League – Round of 32 (Second Leg)

21-22 February 2018

CSKA Moskva – Crvena Zvezda
Referee: Manuel de Sousa (POR, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Ricardo Santos (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Nuno Pereira (POR)
Additional AR 1: Fabio Veríssimo (POR)
Additional AR 2: Luis Godinho (POR)
Fourth Official: Rui Teixeira (POR)
Referee Observer: Ilkka Koho (FIN)

Lokomotiv Moskva – OGC Nice
Referee: Pavel Královec (CZE)
Assistant Referee 1: Roman Slyško (SVK)
Assistant Referee 2: Ivo Nádvorník (CZE)
Additional AR 1: Petr Ardeleánu (CZE)
Additional AR 2: Karel Hrubeš (CZE)
Fourth Official: Jiří Moláček (CZE)
Referee Observer: Frank De Bleeckere (BEL)

Sporting – Astana
Referee: Tamás Bognár (HUN)
Assistant Referee 1: Balázs Buzás (HUN)
Assistant Referee 2: Theodoros Georgiou (HUN)
Additional AR 1: Ádám Farkas (HUN)
Additional AR 2: Péter Solymosi (HUN)
Fourth Official: Péter Kóbor (HUN)
Referee Observer: Zbigniew Przesmycki (POL)

Lazio – FCSB
Referee: Slavko Vinčič (SVN)
Assistant Referee 1: Tomaž Klančnik (SVN)
Assistant Referee 2: Andraž Kovačič (SVN)
Additional AR 1: Rade Obrenovič (SVN)
Additional AR 2: Roberto Ponis (SVN)
Fourth Official: Grega Kordež (SVN)
Referee Observer: Herbert Fandel (GER)

Viktoria Plzeň – Partizan
Referee: Jakob Kehlet (DEN)
Assistant Referee 1: Lars Hummelgaard (DEN)
Assistant Referee 2: Heine Sørensen (DEN)
Additional AR 1: Michael Tykgaard (DEN)
Additional AR 2: Jens Maae (DEN)
Fourth Official: Christian Brixen (DEN)
Referee Observer: Uno Tutk (GER)

Villarreal – Olympique Lyonnais
Referee: Luca Banti (ITA)
Assistant Referee 1: Alessandro Giallatini (ITA)
Assistant Referee 2: Alessandro Costanzo (ITA)
Additional AR 1: Paolo Valeri (ITA)
Additional AR 2: Daniele Doveri (ITA)
Fourth Official: Riccardo Di Fiore (ITA)
Referee Observer: László Vágner (HUN)

RB Leipzig – SSC Napoli
Referee: Anthony Taylor (ENG)
Assistant Referee 1: Gary Beswick (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Adam Nunn (ENG)
Additional AR 1: Craig Pawson (ENG)
Additional AR 2: Stuart Attwell (ENG)
Fourth Official: Stephen Child (ENG)
Referee Observer: Alain Hamer (LUX)

Zenit – Celtic
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Pau Cebrián Devís (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Roberto Díaz Pérez (ESP)
Additional AR 1: Carlos Del Cerro Grande (ESP)
Additional AR 2: Alejandro Hernández Hernández (ESP)
Fourth Official: Teodoro Sobrino Magán (ESP)
Referee Observer: Rune Pedersen (NOR)

Dynamo Kyiv – AEK Athens
Referee: Matej Jug (SVN)
Assistant Referee 1: Matej Žunič (SVN)
Assistant Referee 2: Manuel Vidali (SVN)
Additional AR 1: Nejc Kajtazovič (SVN)
Additional AR 2: Dejan Balažič (SVN)
Fourth Official: Tomislav Pospeh (SVN)
Referee Observer: Elmir Pilav (BIH)

Atlético de Madrid – FC København
Referee: Gediminas Mažeika (LTU)
Assistant Referee 1: Vytautas Šimkus (LTU)
Assistant Referee 2: Vytenis Kazlauskas (LTU)
Additional AR 1: Donatas Rumšas (LTU)
Additional AR 2: Robertas Valikonas (LTU)
Fourth Official: Dovydas Sužiedėlis (LTU)
Referee Observer: Murat Ilgaz (TUR)

SC Braga – Olympique de Marseille

Referee: Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)
Assistant Referee 1: Kim Haglund (NOR)
Assistant Referee 2: Magnus Lundberg (NOR)
Additional AR 1: Tore Hansen (NOR)
Additional AR 2: Ola Hobber Nilsen (NOR)
Fourth Official: Jon-Michael Knutsen (NOR)
Referee Observer: John Ward (IRL)

Arsenal – Östersunds
Referee: Ivan Kružliak (SVK)
Assistant Referee 1: Branislav Hancko (SVK)
Assistant Referee 2: Martin Balko (SVK)
Additional AR 1: Peter Kralović (SVK)
Additional AR 2: Filip Glova (SVK)
Fourth Official: František Ferenc (SVK)
Referee Observer: Darko Čeferin (SVN)

AC Milan – Ludogorets
Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Roberto Alonso Fernández (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Juan Yuste Jiménez (ESP)
Additional AR 1: Juan Martínez Munuera (ESP)
Additional AR 2: José Sánchez Martínez (ESP)
Fourth Official: Raúl Cabañero Martínez (ESP)
Referee Observer: Serhey Zuev (RUS)

FC Salzburg – Real Sociedad

Referee: Sergey Karasev (RUS)
Assistant Referee 1: Anton Averyanov (RUS)
Assistant Referee 2: Tikhon Kalugin (RUS)
Additional AR 1: Sergey Lapochkin (RUS)
Additional AR 2: Sergey Ivanov (RUS)
Fourth Official: Igor Demeshko (RUS)
Referee Observer: Miroslav Tulinger (CZE)

Athletic Club – Spartak Moskva
Referee: Tobias Stieler (GER)
Assistant Referee 1: Rafael Foltyn (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Jan Seidel (GER)
Additional AR 1: Patrick Ittrich (GER)
Additional AR 2: Harm Osmers (GER)
Fourth Official: Christian Gittelmann (GER)
Referee Observer: Rodger Gifford (WAL)

Atalanta Bergamasca – Borussia Dortmund
Referee: Jesús Gil Manzano (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Ángel Nevado Rodríguez (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Diego Barbero Sevilla (ESP)
Additional AR 1: Javier Estrada Fernández (ESP)
Additional AR 2: Ricardo De Burgos Bengoetxea (ESP)
Fourth Official: Miguel Martínez Munuera (ESP)
Referee Observer: Bo Karlsson (SWE)

CONCACAF Champions League – Round of 16 (First Leg)

20-22 February 2018

Herediano – Tigres
Referee: Ismail Elfath (USA, photo)

Assistant Referee 1: Corey Rockwell (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Ian Anderson (USA)
Fourth Official: Theodore Unkel (USA)

Colorado Rapids – Toronto FC

Referee: Kimbell Ward (SKN)
Assistant Referee 1: Graeme Browne (SKN)
Assistant Referee 2: Jean Moreau (HAI)
Fourth Official: Daneon Parchment (JAM)

Tauro – FC Dallas
Referee: Cesar Ramos (MEX)
Assistant Referee 1: Marvin Torrentera (MEX)
Assistant Referee 2: Miguel Hernandez (MEX)
Fourth Official: Oscar Macias (MEX)

Saprissa – America
Referee: Mark Geiger (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Joseph Fletcher (CAN)
Assistant Referee 2: Frank Anderson (USA)
Fourth Official: Armando Villarreal (USA)

Motagua – Tijuana
Referee: Henry Bejarano (CRC)
Assistant Referee 1: Osvaldo Luna (CRC)
Assistant Referee 2: Kevin Stephens (GUY) 

Fourth Official: Juan Calderon (CRC)

Cibao FC – Guadalajara

Referee: Yadel Martinez (CUB)
Assistant Referee 1: Hiran Dopico (CUB)
Assistant Referee 2: Geovany Garcia (SLV)
Fourth Official: Marcos Brea (CUB)

Santa Tecla – Sounders FC
Referee: Melvin Matamoros (HON)
Assistant Referee 1: Melvyn Cruz (HON)
Assistant Referee 2: Angel Castillo (DOM)
Fourth Official: Hector Martinez (HON)

Olimpia – New York Red Bulls
Referee: John Pitti (PAN)
Assistant Referee 1: Gabriel Victoria (PAN)
Assistant Referee 2: Ronald Bruna (PAN)
Fourth Official: Ariel Sanchez (PAN)

UEFA Youth League – Round of 16

20-21 February 2018

Paris St. Germain – FC Barcelona

Referee: Daniel Siebert (GER, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Lasse Koslowski (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Jan Neitzel-Petersen (GER)
Fourth Official: Bastien Dechepy (FRA)
Referee Observer: Pascal Garibian (FRA)

Manchester City – Inter
Referee: Mads-Kristoffer Kristoffersen (DEN)
Assistant Referee 1: Dennis Rasmussen (DEN)
Assistant Referee 2: Victor Skytte (DEN)
Fourth Official: Tom Nield (ENG)
Referee Observer: Peter Jones (ENG)

Tottenham Hotspur – AS Monaco

Referee: Ville Nevalainen (FIN)
Assistant Referee 1: Jan-Peter Aravirta (FIN)
Assistant Referee 2: Turkka Valjakka (FIN)
Fourth Official: John Brooks (ENG)
Referee Observer: Leslie Irvine (NIR)

FC Porto – FC Salzburg
Referee: Sandro Schärer (SUI)
Assistant Referee 1: Bekim Zogaj (SUI)
Assistant Referee 2: Jean-Yves Wicht (SUI)
Fourth Official: João Matos (POR)
Referee Observer: Nuno Castro (POR)

Liverpool FC – Manchester United
Referee: Tiago Martins (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Luis Campos (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Nélson Moniz (POR)
Fourth Official: Scott Oldham (ENG)
Referee Observer: Stephen Lodge (ENG)

Atlético de Madrid – FC Basel
Referee: Andrew Dallas (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: Sean Carr (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: Daniel McFarlane (SCO)
Fourth Official: Valentín Pizarro Gómez (ESP)
Referee Observer: Lucílio Batista (POR)

Bayern München – Real Madrid
Referee: Benoît Millot (FRA)
Assistant Referee 1: Julien Pacelli (FRA)
Assistant Referee 2: Cyril Mugnier (FRA)
Fourth Official: Tobias Reichel (GER)
Referee Observer: Stefan Messner (AUT)

Chelsea – Feyenoord
Referee: Roi Reinshreiber (ISR)
Assistant Referee 1: Sagy Mazamber (ISR)
Assistant Referee 2: Idan Berenshtein (ISR)
Fourth Official: John Busby (ENG)
Referee Observer: Brian Lawlor (WAL)

Successful FWWC 2019 seminar draws to a close in Doha

The referees preparing for the upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 share a single aim: to deliver the best officiating performance ever seen at a Women’s World Cup. To help reach this target, 33 referees from all six confederations travelled to Doha to attend a seminar. The programme awaiting the potential Women’s World Cup participants included numerous theory lessons in the classroom, as well as practical exercises in which the officials were confronted with match situations recreated by local players. The referees received direct feedback on their positioning and decision-making from instructors while still out on the pitch. The theory sessions focused on topics such as reading the game, positioning, fitness and health. The candidates also watched video recordings of past matches before discussing technical and tactical aspects of the clips.
"I’m sure that you will continue your commitment and hard work, and will continue to pursue your dream of reaching the pinnacle of our sport", said Hany Ballan, Deputy Chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee, to the referees in his closing address at the seminar. "Everest is the highest mountain in Asia. It is 8,848 metres high. Only a few people have reached its peak. Do you know how long they had to prepare to reach the summit of Everest? More than three years. They took things step by step, stop by stop, level by level, until they reached the top. It took plenty of hard work and preparation, but when they achieved their goal, the joy they felt was incredible. I’m confident that you all deserve to stand on this particular summit. You deserve to succeed and experience the delight of seeing the fruits of the hard work you have put in all year. I’m sure that your practical, theoretical and fitness preparations will continue." Massimo Busacca, Head of the FIFA Refereeing Department, was also on hand in Doha to add his own encouragement. "Congratulations on successfully completing this seminar," he said. "We deal in facts, and you have proven just how hard you have worked. It is a moment to celebrate and be happy. My advice is that you enjoy yourselves tonight and get back to the hard work tomorrow". FIFA Referees Committee Chairman Pierluigi Collina also emphasised the importance of continued commitment. "How do you stay at the top? Hard work – nothing more, nothing less. France 2019 is the goal you are aiming for. It is the World Cup, the most important competition there is", said the Italian, who was named the world’s best referee for six successive years between 1998 and 2003. "Kari (Seitz, FIFA’s Senior Manager of Refereeing, - editor’s note) said how important it is to be a role model, and that is absolutely vital for us", Collina continued. "We need you to teach a new generation of referees, as this is essential for the future of our sport – and who is better equipped to help this new generation than you? You are the world’s best athletes. We trust you, your expertise and your knowledge. It is a great responsibility. Think about this on your journey home. It would be wonderful if each of you could help to develop a new referee, as this would mean our future is in good hands".

Source: FIFA