21.03.2012 – Meeting with my friend HECTOR BALDASSI, former world class referee (3 matches ath the last 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa). Hector is a referee legend in Argentina and South America, having officiated several top matches in his career.
After an intense “11+ week”, I’ll stay in Tokyo for the FIFA Club World Cup, and namely at the Referee’s Headquarters.
F-MARC organizes as usual the medical care of the match officials for this competion.
Together with me are long-time friends Mitsunori “Mitsu” Tsumaki, and Takashi “Taka” Toriumi (TSM college, Tokyo).
Have a look on fifa.com for this year’s tournament (Dec 8-18, 2011), featuring powerhouses FC Barcelona (incl. Messi) and FC Santos (incl. Neymar).
On Tuesday August 2, 2011 in Atlanta (USA), the NASO (National Association of Sports Officials) Gold Whistle Award was given to my friend Esse Baharmast (FIFA Referee Technical Instructor), in recognition of his significant contributions to the betterment of sports officials. It’s the first time ever that a soccer referee receives this prestigiuos award (former honorees were from NFL; MLB, NBA, and NHL only).
Esse may have no equal when it comes to soccer officiating in the United States. Among his accomplishments are working the 1993 World University Games, 1994 Pan American Games, and the 1996 CONCACAF Gold Cup. He officiated the inaugural MLS game in 1996. He also officiated three games at the 1996 Olympics, becoming the only American referee to officiate an Olympic semifinal (Argentina-Portugal). He is perhaps most well known for a call in the final minute of a match in the 1998 World Cup between Brazil and Norway. While TV broadcasts could not see it clearly, Baharmast whistled a foul in the penalty area as a player for Brazil grabbed one of his opponents. Baharmast was criticized heavily in the media until a Swedish TV film clearly showed he was correct. At that World Cup, he became the only American referee to ever take charge of two matches at the World Cup level. Upon retiring from the field, Esse has served both U.S. Soccer and FIFA in an administrative role. He currently works for FIFA as the technical instructor in charge of elite referees from CONCACAF and Oceania confederations. He also served two terms on the NASO Board of Directors and has continued to be involved with the organization for a number of years.
Again I’m reunited with my very good friend Mitsu (Mitsunori Tsumaki), from the Tokyo College of Medical Sports, during a FIFA World Cup. We’re here in Bogotà, Colombia for the U-20 tournament (19/7-20/8/11), and we ensure the medical coverage (on behalf of F-MARC) of the FIFA referee’s team. Several friends are working in the staff: Claudio Pilot, Esse Baharmast, Leslie Irvine, Fernando Tresaco Gracia, Alejo Perez Leguizamon, Manuel Lopez, only to name a few of them.
Uruguay wins the Copa America 2011 beating Paraguay 3:0 by goals of Diego Forlan (2) and Luis Suarez (1).
The final was played in the famous “Monumental” stadion (home of the River Plate club) in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
My friends Ernesto Filippi (Technical Instructor) and Gustavo de Renzis (Medical-Physio) were in the referee’s staff.
The final match was officiated by Ms Bibiana Steinhaus (Germany).
The Medical support for the referee selection was provided by F-MARC.
FIFA Media Release – Wednesday 13 July 2011
FIFA is pleased to announce the appointment of Massimo Busacca as the Head of the FIFA Refereeing Department.
Congratulations Massimo !
Keigo Nakajima (Japan) and Remo Hausherr (Switzerland) were our two head physiotherapists in the medical team of the FIFA referees at the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico (18 June – 10 July 2011).
They were also at the FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa, and at other FIFA tournaments.