Saudi referee deselected from 2018 World Cup duty

A Saudi referee who has admitted soliciting a bribe has been deselected from 2018 World Cup duty, the FIFA Referees Committee confirmed on Wednesday.

The 32-year-old Fahad al-Mirdasi refereed games at the Rio Olympics in 2016 and the 2017 Confederations Cup and had been set to oversee World Cup games in Russia.


“Fahad al-Mirdasi is withdrawn with immediate effect,” a FIFA statement said.

As referees at the 2018 World Cup were selected in teams of three, Mirdasi’s two assistants Mohammed al-Abakry and Abdulah al-Shalwai are also deselected, the FIFA Referees Committee said.

Two weeks ago Mirdasi was given a lifetime ban in Saudi Arabia after admitting soliciting a bribe from a Saudi club, according to the Saudi Football Federation.

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Mirdasi had been scheduled to oversee Saudi’s King’s Cup final earlier this month but was suddenly replaced a few hours before kick-off.