December 19, 2013

Sandro Ricci appointed to handle 2013 CWC Final

Brazilian referee Sandro Meira Ricci has been appointed to handle the final match of the 2013 FIFA Club  World Cup, between FC Bayern München and Raja Casablanca, to be played on 21 December 2013 in Marrakech. He will be assisted by his countrymen Emerson de Carvalho and Marcelo Van Gasse.

Sandro Ricci at his first FIFA final (c)

A FIFA referee since 2011, he joined in 2013 the list of the preselected officials for 2014 WC. This is his second FIFA tournament, aftter the 2013 U20 WC held in Turkey, competition in which he officiated two group-stage matches, one quarterfinal and the third-place final. Prior to this assignment, the last CONMEBOL referee appointed for a FIFA final had been Martín Vázquez from Uruguay, which handled the FIFA U17 WC Final in 2009.  For Sandro Ricci, this will be the second match in the competition, after having refereed a quarterfinal.  To complete the officiating crew for this final, Mark Geiger will act as fourth official and Sean Hurd as reserve assistant referee.

Match 8 - Final
21 December 2013, 20:30 CET (Marrakech)
FC Bayern München - Raja Casablanca
Referee: Sandro Ricci (BRA)
Assistant Referee 1: Emerson De Carvalho (BRA)
Assistant Referee 2: Marcelo Van Gasse (BRA)
Fourth Official: Mark Geiger (USA)
Reserve AR: Sean Hurd (USA)

A few hours earlier, the third place final will be played in the same stadium, between Guangzhou Evergrande FC and Atletico Mineiro. The referee selected by FIFA for this clash is the Iranian Alireza Faghani, at his second match in this tournament, after a quarterfinal. Néant Alioum will take the duties of fourth official.

Match 7 - Third Place Final
21 December 2013, 17:30 CET (Marrakech)
Guangzhou Evergrande FC - Atletico Mineiro
Referee: Alireza Faghani (IRN)
Assistant Referee 1: Hassan Kamranifar (IRN)
Assistant Referee 2: Reza Sokhandan (IRN)
Fourth Official: Néant Alioum (CMR)
Reserve AR: Peter Edibi (NGA)

Thanks, as always, to our source Árbitro Internacional for the  whole coverage of the appointments for this tournament.


  1. Congrats to Faghani and especially Ricci!

  2. Sepp Blatter confirms the recently trailed vanishing spray will be used by referees in next years World Cup.

  3. I think FIFA is mainly using this tournment to test a few marginal referee candidates for WC 2014. We all know Ricci has been pushed hard by FIFA to be at WC 2014. Carballo from Spain almost has no chance for WC, as he only gets one match in his first FIFA tournment ever. Geiger is really unlucky to miss the chance to referee the final, this is his last chance to impress for selection.

    1. Geiger already handled a FIFA final in 2011 and he also had a good Olympic tournament in 2012.
      I see him as sure name for WC.

    2. Geiger's ARs both allowed offside goals in their match. Fletcher missed a very clear offside in the 1-1 goal and Hurd a tight offside in the 1-2. The penalty was however correct.

    3. Geiger deserves this World Cup. It would be a shame if he was left off the list. He quit his day job to put a full 100% commitment and has taken a lesser role in MLS to make the World Cup. He has made many improvements over the years. He was excellent in qualifying. He was good at the Olympics, has had a U20 final without any criticism of what I know.

      Yes, he still lets play go too often leading to a lot of cards at times, but I think that style goes better outside of MLS where teams aren't looking to pick fights every game.

    4. To me Geiger is safe for the World Cup. A USA name is pretty sure with two referees on the list, and Geiger will always be on top in a comparison with Marrufo for me. Also he has been in good form the last couple of seasons. Maybe he would have had the CWC final without these mistakes from his assistants, but I don't think it will have any influence on his selection for the World Cup.

      BTW, did anyone see the final? How did Ricci do?

    5. Concerning Geiger, I agree that he is very likely sure for the World Cup. The only question would be as what, as referee or as fourth official.
      His final performance in Colombia was however not good at all as far as I remember. He struggled in disciplinary control and player management at that time. And becoming a professional referee and abandoning the normal day job is fine, but of course does not automatically qualify you for a World Cup. But as mentioned, he is clearly USA's no.1 and they finally will have a World Cup referee after 12 years (if we ignore Stott as fourth official in Germany).

      Ricci did a very good job yesterday. He had no problems with this match and stayed faultless in the first half. His foul detection was very good for my taste. Check Bayern's 1:0 goal, a very good onside by De Carvalho.

    6. If Geiger only goes as fourth official, then who is going to represent CONCACAF as referees: Aguilar, Garcia and who else? I think Geiger will be selected ahead of Rodriguez, although the later already has 2 World Cups under his belt.

  4. Are you sure they were offside? In the highlights posted on the FIFA web site it is not clear.

    1. Yes.
      Stop yourself (FIFA was as clever enough to disable the stop function around the contact with the ball on their site).

  5. Alireza Faghani with a correct red card against Ronaldinho.
    But he missed another RC for the Chinese player who originally provoked this violent conduct with a violent conduct by himself..

    1. 2-3 goal was tight offside, but still a crucial mistake which led to the final score (Kamranifar involed)

  6. A tremendous call by assistant referee 1 in the 1-0 scored by Dante.
    Very strong.


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