Frappart to become first female referee for men’s Champions League

French referee, Stephanie Frappart will become the first woman to referee a men’s Champions League match on Wednesday when Juventus host Dynamo Kiev in Turin.

This development was confirmed by the European football’s governing body UEFA.

The 36-year-old made history as the first woman to referee in the French top flight, and presided over the 2019 UEFA Super Cup final between Liverpool and Chelsea. She also made her Europa League debut in October.

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This is the first time that a woman has been assigned to referee a game in Europe’s most prestigious club competition.

Italian giants Juventus host Ukrainian side Dynamo in Group G at the Allianz Stadium. 

Cristiano Ronaldo’s Juve, second in the group, are already through to the last 16 along with leaders Barcelona with two games to play.

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Frappart started her refereeing career at the age of 13. She was the first woman referee in the French second division in 2014, before she moved up to the men’s Ligue 1 five years later.

In Europe, she was also the first woman to referee a men’s international when she took charge of September’s Nations League match between Malta and Latvia. She also recently refereed her first two Europa League matches — Leicester v Zorya Luhansk on October 22 and Granada v Omonia Nicosia last Thursday.

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She follows in the footsteps of two trailblazers in Nicole Petignat, the first woman to officiate in the UEFA Cup in 2003, and Bibiana Steinhaus, who became the first woman referee in a major European league when she arrived in Germany’s Bundesliga.

“It is at the same time a privilege, an honour and a responsibility,” Frappart said before her first full season at the top in 2019/2020 which was cut short because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

“I hope that my career will encourage young girls to become involved in refereeing.”

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