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Question Number: 21662

Law 5 - The Referee 7/17/2009

Timothy Mann of Akron, OH USA asks...

This question is a follow up to question 21648

This is more of a comment than a question, but I believe the age is actually 45. I was doing some research on the great Pierluigi Collina, and he was offered the opportunity to receive an extension to referee a World Cup match at the age of 46, and to my knowledge is the only one who has ever received such an invitation. But as the original answer writer said, someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

I believe that the extension offered to Collina was by the Italian Federation to permit him one more year in Series A, not to referee a World Cup match.

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Answer provided by Referee Steve Montanino

FIFA would have a very hard time justifying their age limit policy if they were giving merit based exemptions, because that would essentially defeat the entire point of having an age limit.

I am personally against the age limit. Let the fitness test be the way to eliminate refs who can't keep up. That is a fair objective way to do it, and will essentially be it's own age limit, but it won't end the careers of referees prematurely.

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Answer provided by Referee Keith Contarino

I KNEW someone would correct me and thanks! FIFA's mandatory age requirement is idiotic. The world is deprived of one of the greatest referees of all time because of an arbitrary number? If he could pass the fitness tests he should have been allowed to continue as long as possible.

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