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Top 10 Female Football Referee in 2023

Top 10 Female Football Referee in 2023

Female football referee are becoming increasingly common in the sport, and they are proving to be just as capable as their male counterparts. They have the same level of knowledge, training and experience in the game, and are often more organized and efficient.

Female referees have unique skills that make them well-suited for the job. They tend to better understand the game and are often better at dealing with players and coaches.

Top 10 female football referee

Football is a sport that has historically been dominated by male referees, but that is changing. There are now a number of female referees taking charge of games at the highest level. Here is a look at the top 10 female football referees from around the world.

1. Fernanda Colombo Uliana (Brazil)

Fernanda Colombo Uliana is quickly becoming a household name in football as the first female referee in Brazil’s top-flight football league, the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A. Fernanda has overcome many obstacles to reach this level and is now at the forefront of the movement for gender equality in football.

Born in 1983, Fernanda began her football journey at the age of 15 when she joined a local female football team in her hometown of Porto Alegre. She quickly developed a passion for the sport and was selected to become a referee at the age of 21. After spending several years officiating matches in the lower leagues, Fernanda was finally given the opportunity to become a top-flight referee in 2020.

2. Aurelie Sara Bollier (Switzerland)

Aurelie Sara Bollier is a female football referee making waves in male-dominated sport. She is the only female FIFA referee in Switzerland and is paving the way for other women in the sport.

The 27-year-old has been a professional referee since 2014 and has officiated over 100 matches in the Swiss professional leagues. She also was the first female referee to officiate men’s matches in the Swiss Challenge League.

3. Sian Massey-Ellis (England)

Sian Massey-Ellis is a trailblazing female football referee who has broken down barriers in what is traditionally seen as a male-dominated industry. Massey-Ellis became a professional referee in 2010 and has gone on to officiate matches in the Premier League, Champions League, and Women’s World Cup.

Massey-Ellis has a strong passion for football and has worked hard to get to the top of her chosen field. She was the first female referee to take charge of a Premier League match in 2017 and has also officiated in the Champions League, making her the first female referee to do so. Massey-Ellis has also refereed at the Women’s World Cup and the Olympic Games.

4. Claudia Romani (Italy)

Claudia Romani is an Italian football referee who has recently made a name for herself in the world of professional football. She is the first female referee to be appointed to the Italian Serie A and is quickly becoming a fan favorite.

Romani started her career as an assistant referee in the Italian Serie B in 2018 and has since gone on to referee in the Italian Serie A and Coppa Italia. Her career has been marked by great success and she has been praised for her confidence and authority when officiating games.

5. Elena Tambini (Italy)

Elena Tambini is a revolutionary in the world of football, becoming the first-ever female referee in the history of the Italian Football Federation. She began her journey in the sport in 2009 as an assistant referee in the Serie C, quickly becoming one of the most respected referees in the Italian game.

Tambini has since officiated over a number of big games, including the 2019 Italian Cup Final between Juventus and Fiorentina. She is known for her excellent communication skills and quick decision-making, making her a respected figure in the football community.

6. Katie Patterson

Katie Patterson is making history as the first female to referee a professional football match in England. The 27-year-old from Birmingham has been refereeing since she was 13 and is now the first woman to take charge of a professional game in the English Football League.

Patterson has been a referee for 14 years and has officiated in the FA Women’s Super League, the FA Women’s Championship, the FA Women’s National League and the UEFA Women’s Champions League.

7. Lucy Oliver

Lucy Oliver is a pioneering female football referee who is helping to reshape the sport. Lucy has been officiating football matches since she was 15 and has since become one of the most respected referees in the game.

Before Lucy, there were no female referees in professional football and she is determined to make sure that she isn’t the last. Her tenacity and drive have seen her become the first female referee to officiate at a men’s professional match in the UK and the first woman to referee a men’s professional cup final in England.

8. Katalin Kulcsar

Katalin Kulcsar is a Hungarian football referee and a role model for aspiring female referees around the world. She was the first woman to referee a men’s professional football match in Europe and is currently the only female referee in the top division of any European country.

Katalin began her refereeing career in 1990 and quickly rose through the ranks, becoming a FIFA-accredited referee in 1998. She is a member of the Hungarian Football Federation and has officiated several matches in the UEFA Champions League, putting her on the global stage.

9. Claudia Umpierrez

Claudia Umpierrez is a groundbreaking female referee in the world of football. She is the first female official to referee a men’s professional match in her native Argentina and is the only female referee in the Primera Division, the top tier of the Argentine football pyramid.

Umpierrez was born in Buenos Aires and started playing football at the age of 8. After moving to the United States for college, she took up refereeing as a hobby and soon realized that she had a true passion for it. She eventually returned to Argentina and pursued her dream of becoming a professional referee.

10. Denise Bueno (Brazil)

Denise Bueno is making history in the world of football as the first female referee in Brazil. The 35-year-old is blazing a trail for other women in the sport and is determined to make a name for herself in the competitive and male-dominated world of football.

The Sao Paulo native has been a referee since 2011 and initially found it difficult to gain acceptance in the sport. She has since gone on to officiate in the Copa do Brasil, the Campeonato Paulista and the Campeonato Brasileiro.

female football referee
female football referee

How many female referees are in FIFA?

FIFA, the international governing body of football, has taken great strides in recent years to promote gender equality in the sport. This includes a commitment to increase the number of female referees for international and club matches.

Currently, there are more than 200 female referees who are officially part of the FIFA Referees Committee, making up around 15% of the total number of referees in FIFA.

This is a significant increase from the handful of female referees that were present in the early 2000s and serves as a testament to the progress that has been made in terms of gender equality in football. FIFA remains committed to increasing the number of female referees and has established a Referee Women’s Development.


Who is the first female referee in FIFA?

The first female referee in FIFA was Jacqui Melksham, who was approved in 2005. Melksham was born in Australia and began her career as a referee in the state of Victoria in 2001.

Does Premier League have female referees?

Yes, the Premier League does have female referees. The first female referee in the Premier League was Sian Massey-Ellis, who made her debut in 2010.

What is the age limit for FIFA referees?

The age limit for FIFA referees is 45 years old. Referees must be physically fit and have the necessary knowledge and experience to officiate at the highest level. To become a FIFA referee, applicants must pass a fitness test and complete a refereeing course.

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