A total of eight African referees are among the 36 referees, 63 assistant referees and 36 VAR officials selected by the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) to officiate at the 2022 World Cup.
Referees from Ghana, Nigeria, Egypt, among others missed out on the list released by FIFA which contains names of referees from Zambia, Algeria, Morocco, Gambia, Ethiopia, South Africa, Senegal and DR Congo.
Maguette N’diaye (Senegal)
This is the first time the Senegalese referee would officiate at the FIFA World Cup.
Maguette has vast experience on the African continent having officiated at the 2019 and 2021 Africa Cup of Nations as well as various CAF Champions League and Confederation Cup matches.
He also has some experience at officiating at the global level having officiated at 2019 U-20 FIFA World Cup that was held in Poland and also the 2014 Youth Olympics.
The Senegalese Referee was recently in charge of the controversial 2022 World Cup group stage qualifying game between Ghana and South Africa.
Papa Bakary Gassama (Gambia)
Gassama is one of the most experienced African referees to officiate at this year’s World Cup. It would be the third World Cup appearance for the Gambian referee.
Gassama’s first match was at the 2014 World Cup where he handled a group stage match between the Netherlands and Chile with his second at the 2018 World Cup in a group stage clash between Peru and Denmark.
Gassama was in charge of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations final where Ivory Coast defeated Ghana to lift the trophy as well as numerous finals he had handled at the club competition level.
Janny Sikazwe (Zambia)
The Zambian Referee would be making his second World Cup appearance having handled two matches at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Sikazwe has handled some top final matches in the past including the finals of the 2017 AFCON between Egypt and Cameroon as well as the Club World Cup final between Real Madrid and Kashima Antlers.
Jean Jacques Ndala (DR Congo)
The Congolese Referee would be making his first World Cup appearance.
He was in charge of the 2021/22 CAF Super Cup match between Al Ahly and Raja Club Athletic.
He recently officiated two matches at the 2021 African Cup of Nations in Cameroon having made his debut in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Mustapha Ghorbal (Algeria)
It would be the first World Cup appearance for the Algerian despite handling a match in the FIFA Club World Cup in 2019.
He also handled three matches at the U-20 World Cup in Poland, especially the quarter-final clash between Colombia and Ukraine.
He officiated at the 2019 and 2021 African Cup of Nations as well as numerous matches in both CAF Champions League and Confederations Cup.
Redouane Jiyed (Morocco)
It would be the first World Cup appearance for the Moroccan Referee who has vast experience on the African continent.
He recently officiated at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon and also 2019 Nations Cup in Egypt.
He was among referees selected for the u-20 World Cup in Poland where he officiated two group stage matches
Tesssema Balmak (Ethiopia)
Balmak who is a very well-known face in refereeing on the African continent would get to make his first appearance at the World Cup stage
He started to referee in 2003 and became international FIFA in 2009 with Djibouti vs Somalia in 2010 as his first international match.
He has officiated at the three African Cup of Nations (2017, 2019, 2021) and handled the CAF Super Cup match between Espérance and Raja Casablanca in 2019.
Victor Gomez (South Africa)
It would be the first time the South African would be at the World Cup.
Gomes has vast experience on the continental stage having refereed at the 2015 and 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
He has officiated a flurry of matches in Africa’s Club competition including the finals of the 2018 Confederations Cup match between Vita Club and Raja Casablanca.