The FIFA World Cup 2022 final between Argentina and France on Sunday will see no English official involved in the match, neither on the field nor off it.
According to reports, FIFA feared the presence of English referees could lead to biases against Argentina in the final due to the frozen relationship between Argentina and England, who fought the Falklands war in 1982.
In April, the Falklands war marked its 40th anniversary.
English referee Anthony Taylor was held back in Qatar by FIFA ahead of Sunday’s final, while his compatriot Michael Oliver was sent back home. But the world football’s governing body decided against engaging Taylor in the match.
Taylor officiated Belgium’s goalless draw against Croatia and Ghana’s 3-2 win against South Korea in the group stage.
Polish referee Szymon Marciniak will be in charge of the proceedings tonight.
The last English referee to officiate the World Cup final was Howard Webb when he oversaw Spain’s maiden World Cup win against the Netherlands in 2010.
In the Argentian vs France final, Marciniak will be assisted by his Polish compatriots Pawel Sokolnicki and Tomasz Listkiewicz, while Ismail Elfath of the USA will be the fourth official. The VAR official for this match Tomasz Kwiatkowski is also a Polish national.
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