World Cup 2022: Female referees at the men’s tournament for the first time

Trio will make history at the finals in Qatar, which start in November

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Female referees will officiate at this year’s men’s World Cup in Qatar for the first time in the tournament's history.

France's Stephanie Frappart, Yoshimi Yamashita of Japan and Rwanda's Salima Mukansanga will all take charge of matches when the tournament starts on November 21.

The trio will also be supported by three female assistant referees, Neuza Back of Brazil, USA’s Kathryn Nesbitt and Karen Diaz Medina of Mexico.

"As always, the criteria we have used is 'quality first' and the selected match officials represent the highest level of refereeing worldwide," said the chairman of Fifa's 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 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.”

Yamashita was the first woman to officiate a game in the AFC Champions League earlier this year. also been in charge of Ligue 1 matches in recent times.

Yamashita, from Japan, was the first woman to officiate a game in the AFC Champions League earlier this year.

Meanwhile, Rwandan Mukansanga became the first woman to referee a match at the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon in February.

In total, there will be 36 referees, 69 assistant referees and 24 video match officials for the competition.

Updated: May 19, 2022, 4:21 PM
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