Qatar 2022 Race: North African referees to take charge of Nigeria’s final group matches
World football –governing body, FIFA has appointed referees from North Africa to officiate the Super Eagles’ last two games of the group phase of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 African qualifying series.
Tunisian official Youssef Essrayri, 42, will be referee for the Day 5 encounter between the Super Eagles and the Lone Star of Liberia taking place at the Grand Stade de Tangier in Morocco on Saturday, 13th November. The match is a ‘home’ game for the Lone Star – reverse fixture of the Day 1 clash at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos on 3rd September, which the Super Eagles won 2-0 thanks to a Kelechi Iheanacho brace.
Essrayri will be assisted by compatriots Aymen Ismail (assistant referee 1), Youssef Jami (assistant referee 2) and Mehrez Melki (fourth official) at the match that will begin at 5pm Morocco time (6pm Nigeria time).
Former FIFA referee Seli Zinko from Cote d’Ivoire will be referee assessor while Sullay Kamara from Sierra Leone will be match commissioner. Dr Bilal Mohamed Rida, Moroccan, will serve as medical officer.
For the Day 6 clash against Cape Verde’s Blue Sharks at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos on Tuesday, 16th November, FIFA has listed Algerian official Mustapha Ghorbal as referee. He will be assisted by compatriots Mokrane Gourari (assistant referee 1), Abbes Akram Zerhouni (assistant referee 2) and Lahlou Benbraham (fourth official).
Ivorian Nomandiez Doue, another former FIFA referee, will serve as referee assessor with Sierra Leonean Prince Kai Saquee as match commissioner. The medical officer will be Dr Abdulrahim Onimisi Ozi Salami of Nigeria.
The Nigeria/Cape Verde clash will kick off at 5pm.