Three female referees are set to officiate at the FIFA World Cup that will happen in Qatar between November and December later this year. It will be the first time ever that females will be officiating in the competition since its inception 92 years ago. The FIFA Referees Committee on Thursday afternoon announced the list with the names of the officials that will oversee the World's most loved sporting event. The three female officials in the list were; Mukansanga of Rwanda, Stephanie Frappart of France, and Yoshimi Yamashita of Japan. Three additional women were also named to serve as assistant referees in the tournament. The three were; Neuza Back of Brazil, Karen Diaz Medina of Mexico, and Kathryn Nesbitt of the United States of America.
Chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee Pierluigi Collina said: “We are very happy 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 Díaz 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,” “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 emphasize 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,”
In January this year, Mukansanga wrote history as she became the first woman to officiate at the African Cup Of Nations (AFCON) tournament. All the officials at the 2022 World Cup will have 129 officials in total with 36 of them being referees, 69 assistant referees and 24 video match officials. These officials were chosen in cooperation with the six confederations based on their quality and performances delivered at FIFA tournaments as well as domestic and international competitions recently.