This year's extended FIFA World Cup - involving for the first time 32 teams that will contest a total of 64 matches - will of course need more referees and assistant referees. The FIFA Referees' Committee has therefore chosen 34 referees and 33 assistants to officiate at the World Cup from 10 June to 12 July. As a matter of interest, 24 referees and 22 linesmen were in action at the World Cup, USA '94.

The 67 officials were creamed off from a pool of referees on the basis of their performance ratings but will first have to pass a fitness test. Not more than one referee from each national association was chosen asa matter of principle. Five of the referees - Bujsaim, Lim Kee Chong, Brizio Carter, Tejada Noriega and Van der Ende - officiated at the last World Cup in the USA.

The match officials will be preened and polished at a World Cup seminar to be held in Manoir de Gressy, 30 km north of Paris, from 23 March to 27 March 1998. The referees and assistants will use Manoir de Gressy as their base throughout the World Cup and travel backwards and forwards to each of their designated matches in the various venues.

During the seminar, they will not only be drilled in the Laws of the Game and their application but will also undergo physical training and take the fitness test mentioned above. The participants will also be taught to master the electronic system ("Signal Bip") that enables improved communication among the referee and his assistants. The system was first used at the Olympic Football Tournament in 1996 and has been used with great success at every FIFA competition ever since.

1998 FIFA World Cup Match Officials
list updated 10.02.98

 
Referees
AL ZEID, Abdul Rahman
  BUJSAIM, Ali Mohamed
  OKADA, Masayoshi
  UN-PRASERT, Pirom
KSA
UAE
JPN
THA
Assistant Referees
AL MUSAWI, Mohamed Ahmed
  GHADANFARI, Hussein
  HALIM ABDUL HAMID, Halim
  JEON, Young Hyun
  WICKERAMATUNGE SAMARATHNA Muhamad
OMN
KUW
MYS
KOR
SRI
 
Referees
BELQOLA, Said
  BOUCHARDEAU, Lucian Ousmane
  GHANDOUR, Gamal
  LIM KEE CHONG, An-Yan
  MASEMBE, Charles
MOR
NIG
EGY
MUS
UGA
Assistant Referees
DANTE, Dramane
  MANSRI, Mohamed
  SALIE, Achmat
  SOLDATOS, Aristidis Chris
MLI
TUN
RSA
RSA
 
Referees
BAHARMAST, Esfandiar
  BRIZIO CARTER, Arturo
  RAMDHAN, Ramesh
USA
MEX
TTO
Assistant Referees
GONZALES, Merere Louis
  POWELL, Owen
  SALINAS ROSTRAN, Elias
  TORRES ZUNIGA, Luis Fernando
TTO
JAM
HON
CRC
 
Referees
CASTRILLI, Javier
  GONZALEZ CHAVEZ, Epifanio
  REZENDE DE FREITAS, Marció
  SANCHEZ YANTEN, Mario
  TEJADA NORIEGA, Alberto
  TORO RENDON, John Jairo
ARG
PAR
BRA
CHI
PER
COL
Assistant Referees
ARANGO CARDONA, Jorge Luis
  DIAZ GALVEZ, Jorge Alberto
  GALVAN SOTO, Celestino
  PINTO FILHO, Arnaldo de Menezes
  ROSSI, Claudio Anibal
COL
CHI
PAR
BRA
ARG
 
Referees
LENNIE, Edward
AUS
Assistant Referees
FRED, Lencie
VAN
 
Referees
BATTA, Marc
  BENKÖ, Gunter
  COLLINA, Pierluigi
  DALLAS, Hugh
  DURKIN, Paul
  FRISK, Anders
  GARCIA ARANDA, José-Manuel
  HEYNEMANN, Bernd
  LEVNIKOV, Nikolai
  MEIER, Urs
  MELO PEREIRA, Manuel
  NIELSEN, Kim Milton
  PEDERSEN, Rune
  VAGNER, László
  VAN DER ENDE, Mario
FRA
AUT
ITA
SCO
ENG
SWE
ESP
GER
RUS
SUI
POR
DEN
NOR
HUN
HOL
Assistant Referees
AMLER, Evzen
  DUPANOV, Youri
  FOLEY, Eddie
  GRIGORESCU, Nicolae
  MAZZEI, Gennaro
  NILSSON, Michael
  POCIEGIEL, Jacek
  POUDEVIGNE, Jacques
  RAUSIS, Laurent
  SCHNEIDER, Erich
  TRESACO GRACIA, Fernando
  VAN DEN BROECK, Marc
  WARREN, Mark
  ZAMMIT, Emanuel
CZE
BLR
IRL
ROM
ITA
SWE
POL
FRA
SUI
GER
ESP
BEL
ENG
MLT