The next FIFA appoints female referees for the first time in the history of the Men’s World CupThe FIFA World Cup, to be held in Qatar, will feature female referees for the first time in the history of the event, which begins in November.
The FIFA Referees Committee announced it on Thursday, listing six female match referees, including top three among the 36 referees chosen to officiate the global spectacle. Three other women were appointed as assistant referees.
“We are very pleased that with Stéphanie 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 United States, we have been able to summon female referees for the first time in the history of a FIFA World Cup,” said the chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee, Pierluigi Collina.
French referee Frappart has previously officiated at Men’s World Cup and Champions League qualifiers, as well as the 2019 Women’s World Cup final. She became the first female referee to officiate European Championship matches after being appointed by UEFA last year.
“This concludes a long process that began several years ago with the deployment of female referees to FIFA’s junior and senior men’s tournaments. In this way, we clearly underline that what counts for us is quality and not gender,” Collina said.
“I hope that, in the future, the selection of elite female referees for major men’s competitions will be perceived as something normal and not something sensational. They deserve to be at the FIFA World Cup because they consistently perform at a very high level, and that is the important factor for us,” she added.
The World Cup in Qatar is scheduled from November 21 to December 18.
Travis M. Andrews is a features writer for The Washington Post. He joined The Post in 2016 as a reporter for Morning Mix. He was previously a travel and culture editor for Southern Living magazine, a contributing pop culture reporter for Mashable and the Week, and a contributing editor for the Syfy blog Dvice. He also has freelanced for magazines, including Esquire, GQ and Time. He is the author of the coming book “Because He’s Jeff Goldblum,” a semi-rumination and semi-ridiculous look at the career of the enigmatic actor and an exploration of the shifting nature of fame in the 21st century, to be published in November by Plume.