According to a source on the VChK-OGPU telegram channel and, the leadership of the Russian Football Union (RFU) signed an agreement with the Saudi Arabian Football Federation to invite referees from this country to matches of the Russian championship. In the “future”, similar agreements will be signed with the Qataris and Belarusians.

Well-known people of big-time Russian football reacted caustically, even sarcastically. A popular master, a former player of British clubs - Manchester United and Everton, Andrei Kanchelskis, in a mocking manner, proposed inviting “men in black” from Honduras and other, to put it mildly, not very football powers, to the matches of the domestic championship. “It’s a waste of money,” according to Kanchelskis, to invite such referees. “Although, yes, our refereeing is ugly...”




“From the point of view of a neutral attitude during matches, inviting the same Saudis is not a bad idea, but there are no other advantages,” says international referee Sergei Khusainov. - The level of refereeing itself is just “bottom”, they can break through it. So why call then? No place to put the money?

According to Khusainov, the same chairman of the refereeing department, Serb Mazhich is paid 43 (!) million rubles a year. Is this kind of money commensurate with the contribution of a foreign specialist to the development of domestic football refereeing? Hardly.

“He didn’t initially prepare our referees for the season, didn’t look at them, doesn’t know the possibilities, had a vague idea of the situation,” says Sergei Khusainov. Where can qualified work come from? Fans, experts, and analysts see an extremely low level in literally every round of the championship.




When the notorious Mutko was president of the RFU, teams of foreign referees were invited to the matches of the Russian championship on a one-time basis. In particular, from France and other football-developed countries. By the way, they worked well. Which caused dissatisfaction, even indignation, of some home-grown coaches, for example, Valery Gazzaev. He, like his other colleagues, was used to “twirling” the referees during football matches. Here you can’t get close to the French, you can’t “pressure”, you can cause an international scandal.

And now, unfortunately, the choice is not wide. The only people who can be invited to referee football in the Russian Federation are people from so-called “friendly” countries. From Saudi Arabia, Qatar, maybe Egypt, and why not invite the Chinese - inveterate friends, colleagues, partners?

Only trips to the Russian Federation by teams of foreign referees will cost, no, not a pretty penny, millions of rubles for domestic clubs. The RFU, imagine, is not going to pay for a dubious “pleasure”. The entire financial burden, as in the case of Mazic, will fall solely on the clubs. Bravo, RFU!

“No, no, they won’t come to us from Italy, Germany, France, England for any price,” Sergei Khusainov confirms our version. - From the notorious “solidarity”, sanctions, and other things. Well, look, UEFA recently decided to allow our young men to participate in international tournaments, and a couple of days later they reversed their decision. So we don’t have to wait for great referees in the Russian Championship...

Yes, the situation is deadlock. Well, we have what we have.


Alexey Matveev