FIFA president thanks Arab Cup’s 'number one team' in Qatar

i24NEWS

3 min read
FIFA President Gianni Infantino (R) and Jordan's Prince Ali Al Hussein (L) attend the FIFA Arab Cup 2021 group C football match at the Education City Stadium in Ar-Rayyan, Qatar, on December 1, 2021.
Karim Jaafar/AFPFIFA President Gianni Infantino (R) and Jordan's Prince Ali Al Hussein (L) attend the FIFA Arab Cup 2021 group C football match at the Education City Stadium in Ar-Rayyan, Qatar, on December 1, 2021.

Infantino also referred to the importance of ensuring a fair and transparent game during his address

FIFA President Gianni Infantino visited Doha, Qatar on Monday to offer his thanks to what he called the international game’s “number one team” - the Arab Cup referees.

“You are our first team because without you, there is no FIFA Arab Cup, there is no FIFA World Cup: there is no football,” Infantino announced to the match officials, according to a FIFA press release.

The president also expressed gratitude for the team’s use of video assistant referee (VAR) technology, which helps officials make calls during games by examining match footage.

“With the introduction of VAR and all of the work that you are doing - which is extremely professional and thorough - the whole refereeing category has moved to a different level and you are part of the elite in the world of refereeing,” he said.

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VAR was first introduced in the 2018/2019 edition of FIFA’s Laws of the Game, and has since become an important tool in combating referee bias and ensuring match officials make the right calls to ensure a game is fair.

Infantino also referred to the importance of this impartiality during his address, stressing the role the officials play in preserving the game’s integrity.

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He told officials “(Your) responsibility is to referee games in the best possible way with your conscience and your preparation, but it is also towards football: towards the billions of boys and girls who love the game, who believe in the game and the honesty and transparency of the game.”