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  • Writer's pictureAmy Kate - The Red Way

All Eyes on Stephanie Frappart.

Updated: Jun 1, 2023

It's no secret that 2022 Men's World Cup is surrounded by plenty of controversy. We all have our opinions, but I want to put that aside and focus on one of the POSITIVES! As records are being broken and history is being made I'm here to talk about one individual specifically. And this isn't the first time you've heard the name Stephanie Frappart.

The 38 year old from Herblay-sir-Seine, France is making history once again on December 1, 2022 as she has been appointed head official of the FIFA Men's World Cup Group E match between Costa Rica and Germany taking place in Qatar, becoming the first female referee to take charge of a men’s FIFA World Cup match in the competition's history that stretches back 92 years. Frappart will be joined by assistant referees; Mexico’s Karen Díaz Medina and Neuza Back of Brazil.

Ahead of the tournament, Frappart said she hoped the inclusion of female referees in Qatar would “make things happen” on a broader level. “It’s a strong sign from Fifa and the authorities to have women referees in that country."

Frappart first started refereeing youth games when she was 13 years old. She worked her way up the ladder over the years building up quite a CV. By 2014, she became the first female referee in Ligue 2 (France's second tier of the Men's Football League). In 2015 she was appointed one of the official in the Women's World Cup that took place in Canada.

She was also selected to be one of the officials in the 2019 Women's World Cup held in her native country and then was chosen as head referee of the final in Lyon between USA and the Netherlands on July 7, 2019 when the US secured their fourth World Cup victory.

In addition, Stephanie has a few other historic achievements under her belt, including the honour of being the first female referee in France's Ligue 1, the first women to take charge of a major men's European match when she was appointed the head referee for the 2019 UEFA Super Cup between Liverpool and Chelsea.

When learned she was going to be the head official for the Super Cup, Stephanie told reporters, “It’s a great honour for me, and for female referees as well,” she said. “I hope it serves as an example to all female referees, and to any young girls who may aspire to be a referee.”

Nearly 2 years to the day, on December 2, 2020, Frappart added another first to her list, becoming the first woman to referee a UEFA Champions League match, overseeing Match 5 of 6 in Group G between Juventus vs Dynamo Kiev at Juventus Stadium.

Frappart also was bestowed the honor of officiating the UEFA Women's Champions League match between Atletico Madrid and Chelsea in March of 2021 and a FIFA World Cup qualifier match between Latvia and the Netherlands.

With the most recent appointment at the 2022 Coupe de France Final on May 7, 2022 between Nice and Nantes.

A few weeks later, on May 19, 2022, Frappart was selected along with 6 other female referees for the officiating pool at the 2022 FIFA World Cup held in Qatar.

Earlier this week, Frappart was the fourth official during Group C's match between Mexico and Poland which resulted in a goalless draw.

Like I said in 2019, after all the years of playing, following, and loving this sport, Thursday will mark another landmark day for women in football I fell in love with at four years old.

Congratulations Stephanie, you deserve this!!

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