Boudreau resigns from SSA to pursue refereeing opportunities

Chantal Boudreau, in-coming Referee Development Coordinator and former Business Administrator, announced that she would be resigning from the SSA in order to continue to pursue officiating at the highest level. Chantal was appointed as a FIFA Assistant Referee in 2015 and is Saskatchewan's highest ranking official. She has been diligently building her resume and skill set through high-level matches; in early November Boudreau tended her first FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Papua New Guinea where she was on the line for three games, including a quarter final. As her opportunities increase, Chantal has decided that she will focus her energy in pursuit of this goal. We thank Boudreau for all she has contributed to the association and wish her the very best in the future as she represents Saskatchewan and Canada on the world soccer stage. Chantal's last day in the office will be 28 February 2017. (Source: SSA)
Article 6 of the Regulations governing the registration of international referees, assistant referees, futsal referees and beach soccer referees on FIFA's lists states that “a referee proposed for the lists may not exercise any official function as a member of an executive committee, general secretary, or member of the referees committee of any football club, member association, confederation or FIFA”. (Source: FIFA)

Three retiring FIFA referees honoured by Canada Soccer

Canada Soccer held its annual National Referee Camp in Toronto from 10 to 12 February 2017. The three-day camp prepared the match officials from the national pool for the upcoming season with a series of presentations focused on modern refereeing trends and included the latest in FIFA fitness testing.
In addition, expectations were set for the group related to the National Program and the technical training required on the updated Laws of the Game. Special guest Alex Prus presented on refereeing in MLS and on the PRO Development Academy. "This camp acts as a spring board to the new season and ensures that our match officials have the necessary information to successfully officiate professional games in Canada," said Canada Soccer's Manager of Referees Isaac Raymond.
During an evening awards ceremony, recently retired Canadian FIFA referee Mathieu Bourdeau along with assistants Marie-Josée Charbonneau and Suzanne Morisset were honoured by Canada Soccer. Recently retired national referee Justin Tasev was also honoured.
National badges were awarded to Jasmain Parr and Candace Brown (both BC), Graham Forsyth (MB) and Stephanie Fortin (QC).

Source: Canada Soccer

Ex-FIFA referee Dino Soupliotis passed away at 84

Dino Soupliotis, an honoured member of the Soccer Hall of Fame, has passed away at age 84. Soupliotis was a former referee who spent five years on the FIFA List of Referees from 1976 to 1980. Born in Greece, Constantinos "Dino" Soupliotis spent more than 45 years in the province of Québec. After his retirement from refereeing, he served on Canada Soccer's referees committee and later served as a FIFA referee instructor. From a referee career that spanned more than 2,000 matches, Soupliotis won a Sports Québec "Le Maurice" award in 1979-80 and then the Canada Soccer Aubrey Sanford Meritorious Service Award in 1995. He was honoured by the Québec Soccer Hall of Fame in 1999 and the Soccer Hall of Fame in 2008. Dino Soupliotis was born on 4 January 1933. He passed away on 29 January 2017.

Source: CSA

Fletcher: CONCACAF honor and Canadian pride

Joe Fletcher was recently named as runner-up in the Male Referee of the Year category at the annual CONCACAF Awards after a fantastic 2016. The CONCACAF Awards honor players and achievements in CONCACAF-sanctioned tournaments and competitions involving the Confederation’s national teams at all levels. Performances also eligible for recognition include those achieved in professional club football leagues under CONCACAF’s stewardship in North America, Central America and the Caribbean, as well as the CONCACAF Champions League. PRO’s experienced assistant referee finished second to Mexican referee Cesar Ramos and ahead of Joel Aguilar of El Salvador, paying tribute to both officials before expressing his delight at the honor.
A Canada native, Fletcher wasn’t the only one from his country to be honored at the ceremony, with 23 Canadians nominated across 12 categories, something which makes the official proud of his roots and the talent coming out of the country. “I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge Cesar and Joel. While I haven't been with Cesar before, I’ve been at multiple tournaments with Joel, and he is a class act. “It’s a tremendous honour to be recognized by CONCACAF in this fashion. Being an assistant referee, it comes with the job description that most ‘non-referees’ won't know who we are. You don't pick up a flag to be popular or noticed, and normally when you are, it's for a mistake you have made. So I look at this as an acknowledgement for all assistant referees, that putting your all into every match does get noticed, is appreciated and, for this special moment, also publically recognized. I'm proud to be Canadian. Period. I'm happy to say at each position; goalkeeper, defender, midfielder, striker, coach and referee — members of Canada Soccer were all recognized. I think it says a lot for the talent that is currently here, and more about what is to come.” Fletcher’s fine year included Champions League, World Cup Qualifying and Copa America Centenario assignments, as well as taking the flag regularly during the MLS Regular Season, Playoffs and MLS Cup. There’s always room for improvement, however, at least in the eyes of the Canadian, who is already working hard on being in the best condition ahead of the upcoming season. Fitness work will step up with Sports Scientist Matt Hawkey putting the officials through their paces during the three-day program, but Fletcher knows the hard work will all be worth it come kickoff on March 3. “I'm not sure the ‘perfect year’ exists. Copa America was very special, as was the MLS Cup, both for varying reasons. At the same time I can easily look at my individual performances this year and pick out things I could have done better. I could have been quicker to a decision, better positioned for another. It's always a personal goal on a match to be above standard or very good in the work rate department. It’s nice to take a moment to reflect on accomplishments and appreciate the recognition, but like everyone says, you're only as good as your last game, so it's on to 2017, starting with PRO preseason camp and our upcoming fitness test. We have an array of young talented ARs in our ranks who will make the test look easy, so I have to work hard to keep up to their pace. Matt does well to help all the referees and any assistant referee who asks for it. Many curse his name during training sessions, but all those people typically pass with flying colours - that just reinforces the point that the real work is done when nobody else is watching!”
Greg Barkey, PRO's Manager of Assistant Referees, added: "Joe is always looking for ways to improve, he studies the game beforehand, has an incredibly high work rate during the match and then does a complete review and self-evaluation. He is one of the best because he works at it every day. To be recognized by CONCACAF in a category usually reserved for center referees is testament that others have seen what an excellent referee and person he is. PRO is very proud to have him as part of our team of assistant referees."

Source: PRO

Fischer and Briere appointed to CONCACAF U-20 Championship 2017

CONCACAF announced the names of match officials selected for the 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship in Costa Rica. A total of 28 match officials, 12 referees and 16 assistant referees, from 15 different countries earned assignments to the competition, which qualifies four teams directly to the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup. “We have appointed the top referees to officiate the CONCACAF U-20 Championship, which is one of the oldest and most important competitions within our Confederation”, said CONCACAF Director of Refereeing Brian Hall. “The tournament promises challenging and competitive games, providing a platform to display not only the best professional young players, but also the extraordinary talent of our referees”. The CONCACAF U-20 Championship will be played from 17 February to 15 March 2017, at the Estadio Nacional in San Jose and the Estadio Ricardo Saprissa Ayma in Tibas. (Source: CONCACAF)

Referees
1. Drew Fischer (CAN, photo)
2. Henry Bejarano (CRC)
3. Oscar Reyna (GUA)
4. Armando Castro (HON)
5. Melvin Matamoros (HON)
6. Kevin Morrison (JAM)
7. Valdin Legister (JAM)
8. Erick Miranda (MEX)
9. Jafeth Perea (PAN)
10. Javier Santos (PUR)
11. Marlon Mejia (SLV)
12. Armando Villarreal (USA)

Assistant Referees
1. Philippe Briere (CAN)
2. Carlos Fernandez (CRC)
3. Leonardo Sanchez (CUB)
4. Raidel Toledo (CUB)
5. Hermenerito Leal (GUA)
6. Melvyn Cruz (HON)
7. Richard Washington (JAM)
8. Marcos Quintero (MEX)
9. Henry Pupiro (NCA)
10. Ronald Bruna (PAN)
11. Jairo Morales (PUR)
12. Graeme Browne (SKN)
13. Geovany Garcia (SLV)
14. Zachari Zeegelaar (SUR)
15. Joseph Bertrand (TRI)
16. Frank Anderson (USA)

CONCACAF Refereeing Excellence Program

The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) and the Federación Mexicana de Fútbol Asociación (FEMEXFUT) announced a joint effort to continue improving the standard of football within the region through a Program of Refereeing Excellence and Coaching Education. The program conducted in the new facilities of FEMEXFUT in Toluca, Mexico, provides an innovative platform to train Technical Development Directors from 35 Member Associations as well as top national-level referees in a professional environment.
“The Program of Excellence for Referees and Coaching Education is an important step in investing in football, a pillar of our ONE CONCACAF Vision. The Confederation and FEMEXFUT are working together to implement the initiative, which represents a key deliverable to accomplish our mission to develop the game,” said CONCACAF President Victor Montagliani. “For the first time, CONCACAF and FEMEXFUT have established a program that presents unique educational tools to increase and improve the sport quality within the region.” Coaches and referees will have customized access to FEMEXFUT’s educational resources, including special sessions on technical, physical, psychological, and nutritional aspects. Top national-level referees will be trained, over an eight-week period, by professional referees from Mexico as well as FIFA Instructors. Participants will be assigned selected games to officiate in one of the lower divisions of FEMEXFUT, commensurate with their level of refereeing. This program consists of two four-week sessions: the Introductory Course, which begins on Monday, January 30 to Monday, February 27; and a Certification Course that will begin on Monday, September 4 to Monday, October 2, 2017. Through a thorough application process that resulted in over 30 candidates, CONCACAF selected 14 referees that will participate in the program.

Source: CONCACAF

Chenard awarded CONCACAF Female Referee of the Year 2016

The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) announced the winners for the annual CONCACAF Awards. In an equally-weighted vote among Member Association women’s and men’s national team coaches/captains, media and fans, Carol Anne Chenard won CONCACAF Female Referee of the Year honours, while Joe Fletcher finished as runner up for CONCACAF Male Referee of the Year.


CONCACAF Female Referee of the Year
1. Carol Anne Chenard (Canada)
2. Quetzalli Alvarado (Mexico)
3. Kimberly Moreira (Costa Rica, Assistant Referee)

CONCACAF Male Referee of the Year
1. Cesar Ramos (Mexico)
2. Joe Fletcher (Canada, Assistant Referee)
3. Joel Aguilar (El Salvador)

Winners in other categories are: Players of the Year – Bryan Ruiz and Alex Morgan; Goalkeepers of the Year - Keylor Navas and Ashlyn Harris; Coaches of the Year - Oscar Ramírez and Amelia Valverde; Goal of the Year – Jesús Corona, in the 80th minute of the Copa America Centenario match vs. Venezuela; Outstanding Performance – Canadian Women's National Team and Head Coach John Herdman.
The CONCACAF Awards are designed to honor the year’s outstanding performers and achievements in confederation-sanctioned competitions involving national teams at all levels and age categories, including FIFA World Cup matches and qualifying for both genders. Performances also eligible for recognition included those achieved in professional club football leagues within the Member Associations, as well as the Champions League.

Source: CONCACAF

NASL and USL granted provisional Division II status

Good news for Canadian referees. The U.S. Soccer Board of Directors voted to grant provisional Division II status to the North American Soccer League (NASL) and United Soccer League (USL) for the 2017 season. That means that FC Edmonton (NASL), Vancouver Whitecaps II, Toronto FC II and Ottawa Fury (USL) will all compete in 2017 at the Division II level.
The board carefully considered the applications of each league. While neither league meets all the standards set forth by U.S. Soccer, the board granted provisional Division II status and will work with the leagues on a pathway to full compliance. The board also determined that the leagues will be required to meet additional criteria. "After an exhaustive process working with both leagues, in the best interest of the sport the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors has decided to grant provisional Division II status to the NASL and USL", said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. "U.S. Soccer will create an internal working group that will work with each league to set a pathway to meet the full requirements for Division II and allow for the larger goal of creating a sustainable future. We look forward to another productive year for professional soccer in this country". U.S. Soccer will determine the additional requirements and a timeline for completion in the coming weeks.

Source: USSF

Chenard named IFFHS World’s 4th-best Woman Referee in 2016

Canadian Carol Anne Chenard was chosen by IFFHS as the world’s fourth-best woman referee in 2016. Hungarian Katalin Kulcsar was named as the IFFHS 2016 World’s Best Woman Referee, winning support from football experts in 56 countries around the World in the 5th Annual IFFHS Women’s Awards. It was a very close ranking, Kulcsar had only 5 points more than Katarina Monzul (winner 2015) and Bibiana Steinhaus (winner 2013 and 2014), and 6 points more than the Canadian Carol Anne Chenard (photo).

IFFHS World’s Best Women Referees 2016
1. Katalin Kulcsar (Hungary) 58 points
2. Kataryna Monzul (Ukraine) 53 points
3. Bibiana Steinhaus (Germany) 53 points
4. Carol Anne Chenard (Canada) 52 points
5. Pernilla Larsson (Sweden) 26 points
6. Teodora Albon (Romania) 24 points
7. Riem Hussein (Germany) 23 points
8. Esther Stäubli (Switzerland) 21 points
9. Stephanie Frappart (France) 20 points
10. Olga Miranda (Paraguay) 11 points
11. Gladys Lengwe (Zambia) 10 points
12. Lucila Venegas (Mexico) 10 points
13. Claudia Umpierrez (Uruguay) 10 points
14. Ok Ri Hyang (Korea DPR) 10 points
15. Carina Vitulano (Italy) 10 points
16. Olga Zadinova (Czech Republic) 9 points
17. Kate Jacewicz (Australia) 8 points
18. Efthalia Mitsi (Greece) 4 points
19. Rita Gani (Malaysia) 3 points
20. Anna Maria Keighley (New Zealand) 1 point

Match Officials added to the 2017 National List

The CSA Referees Committee has appointed five match officials (1 referee and 4 assistant referees) to the 2017 National List. Upon successful completion of the fitness test, the Laws of the Game examination and attendance at the National Camp, they will become full members of the List. Soccer Quebec recently posted the following CSA information about the new National match officials:

Referee
1. Mathieu Cardinal (Candiac, QC, photo)
Cardinal began as a referee at the age of 14. He became a Provincial referee in 2007 and has been a part of the Provincial Development Program since 2010. In 2015 he was appointed to the Generation Adidas Regional Championships in Toronto and the Men’s CCAA Championships in Montreal. This past year he was appointed to the Generation Adidas Championships in Dallas, the U18 Club Championships in Vaughan and the Men’s CIS Championships in Guelpin. He will be joining the National List as a Referee.

Assistant Referees
1. Candace Brown (Vancouver, BC)
Brown became a referee in 1999 and was promoted to the Provincial level in 2009. Her appointments include the dS Championships (2006, 2007, 2012, 2013, 2016), the U18 Club Championships (2005. 2014, 2016), as well as the Senior Club Championship in 2006. She worked as a Referee Liaison for the 2015 Women’s World Cup, as well as for Canada Soccer International games in Vancouver in 2016. She will be joining the 2017 National List as an Assistant Referee.

2. Graham Forsyth (Winnipeg, MB)
Forsyth became a referee in 2000 and a Provincial referee in 2012. He has been officiating in CIS and PDL matches locally. He was appointed to the Canada Soccer Boys All-Star Championships (2008, 2009), the U16 Club Championships (2009, 2015), the Senior Club Championships (2012) and the U18 Club Championships in 2016. He will be joining the National List as an Assistant Referee.

3. Stephanie Fortin (Quebec City, QC)
Fortin became a referee in 2009 and was promoted to Provincial level in 2015. In her short time as an official she has been appointed to the Eastern Masters Championships (2013), the U14 Club Championships (2015), the CIS Championships in 2014, 2015, 2016, and the U18 Club Championships in 2016. She will be joining the National List as an Assistant Referee.

4. Jasmain Parr (Kelowna, BC)
Parr started refereeing in 2011 and was promoted to Provincial in 2014. He has been appointed to the CCAA Men’s Championships (2012), the U16 Club Championships (2013) and the U18 Club Championships in 2014 and 2016. He will be joining the 2017 National List as an Assistant Referee.

Source: CSA/Soccer Quebec