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The first Saudi woman to obtain an international degree in football arbitration: My choice was not a coincidence

The Saudi international referee entered history, after she became the first Saudi woman to receive the international badge by FIFA, according to a list of 19 Saudi referees adopted for the year 2023.

Thus, Al-Anoud Al-Asmari became the first Saudi woman to receive the international badge from the International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA).

She explained in an interview with, “My choice as the first Saudi female referee was not a coincidence, but was the result of continuous work with the Saudi Federation since 2018, and I was one of the first referees this year, and I received many courses and qualifications from the Saudi Federation.” And the physical and theoretical exams that I passed.

And she continued, “These tests are tests for referees from FIFA, which is a prerequisite for passing the FIFA test, in addition to the matches that I refereed during that period, including the community league and the women’s league, all the way to the First Division and Premier League for this year, and I also have Foreign participation in the FIFA tournament in the Emirates in 2019 in Dubai and the Arab Women’s Cup in Egypt in 2020 AD, all of which are stages that helped me build my international experiences.

Al-Anoud during her arbitration of a match

mixed feelings

She described her feelings when she received the news of being chosen for this field, that she could not control herself from happiness, and added: “I was full of joy, laughing and crying, as it is a reward for all the fatigue of the years and the moment I have been waiting for, and with this joy is a sense of responsibility to reach future goals, and this is the beginning of the journey and there Endless dreams and ambitions.

Fundamentals of selection of referees

In a related context, Al-Asmari listed the most important foundations that FIFA is keen on, through which training and exams are obtained, and it is important to pass them so that the referee reaches the international level, and it is a great challenge to the referee because it is a set of tests, and it differs from the standards for local arbitration, and the difference is summed up in The style of football between countries, and the international arbitration is certainly different from the local, and in the end the law is the same, and the difference is physical and in the method of training.

level of women’s sports

And she continued her speech, “The levels of women’s sports in Saudi Arabia differ between first-class and excellent teams, at a time when we found the interest of the Saudi Federation and the entry of large clubs such as Al-Shabab, Al-Hilal, Al-Ittihad, Al-Nasr and Al-Ahly, which increased the competition, with the presence of many Saudi female professionals who gave impetus to the players to present the most beautiful and the best, This reflected positively on the Saudi women’s team.”

Support and empowerment

She added: “There is no doubt that there is great support from the Sports Federation for the youth of the country, the support of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the sports leadership represented by the Minister of Sports Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, and it is one of the plans to empower Saudi women in the field of women’s sports and football and vision 2030, and the daughters and sons of this country have proven that they are up to the challenge entrusted to them, and the next one will reward this distinction by raising the Saudi flag high.”

It is noteworthy that Al-Hikma Al-Anoud Al-Asmari began her arbitration career at the end of 2018 with small workshops, and enhanced her skills by participating in an arbitration course organized by FIFA in Dubai in 2019, and she joined the qualifying coexistence program that was organized in Cairo for Arab women and participants in the arbitration of the Arab Women’s Cup in 2021. .

Al-Anoud participated in the arbitration teams for the first women’s regional league in Saudi Arabia in 2021 and is now working on the women’s Premier League arbitration teams in its first edition during the current season.

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