Five Canadians have been named as match officials for this summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
Marie-Soleil Beaudoin and Myriam Marcotte are among the 33 referees chosen. Chantal Boudreau is one of the 55 assistant referees and Carol Anne Chenard and Drew Fischer are among the 19 video match officials selected.
Fischer was one of 24 video match officials at the recent men’s World Cup in Qatar.
The officials panel for the Women’s World Cup was announced Monday by the FIFA referees committee.
“As always, the criteria we have used is ‘quality first’ and the selected on-field match officials represent the highest level of refereeing worldwide,” said former referee Pierluigi Collina, who chairs the committee.
Sixth-ranked Canada has been drawn in Group B alongside No. 12 Australia, No. 23 Ireland and No. 45 Nigeria at the 32-team tournament, which runs July 20 to Aug. 20.
FIFA says it started looking at possible tournament officials back in 2020, with more than 170 candidates.
“Even though the pandemic affected our activities, we had enough time to provide the candidates with good preparation,” said Colina.
The list includes France’s Stephanie Frappart, who became the first female referee to take charge of a match at the men’s World Cup when she handled the Dec. 1 Costa Rica-Germany game in Qatar. Frappart’s assistant referee tandem of Brazil’s Neuza Back and Mexico’s Karen Diaz is also headed to the Women’s World Cup.
American Kathryn Nesbitt, who was an assistant referee for the round-of-16 game between England and Senegal in Qatar, has also been chosen.
The selected match officials are scheduled to take part in seminars in Doha and Montevideo in January and February.
The VAR system, implemented at the Women’s World Cup in 2019 and men’s World Cup in 2018, features – for the first time – six women.