Female ref for Lionesses final took charge in England men’s game after huge fire

The trailblazing female referee who will be in charge of this afternoon's Euro 2022 final once officiated an England men's game – and boy was it memorable.

Kateryna Monzul made history two years ago after refereeing a UEFA Nations League match between San Marino and Gibraltar as part of the first all-female officiating team to take charge of a senior men's international.

A year later she was barking orders at Jack Grealish, Mason Mount and Co as the whistle-woman for England's World Cup qualifier against Andorra – a fixture that was nearly postponed after a massive fire broke out inside the stadium the day before.

READ MORE: Andorra stadium on fire 24 hours before England World Cup clash

The match itself was fairly straightforward, with goals from Ben Chilwell, Bukayo Saka, Tammy Abraham, James Ward-Prowse and Jack Grealish sealing a comfortable 5-0 win for the Three Lions – though Monzul did have to dish out a little discipline, brandishing yellows for John Stones, Jadon Sancho and Conor Coady.

The 41-year-old refereed her first senior men's match way back in 2016, becoming the first female official to take charge of a game in Ukrainian football history.

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Along with France's Stephanie Frappart – who is fourth official at Wembley this afternoon – Monzul is regarded as the best female referee in the world.

She's taken charge of three Lioness fixtures at major international tournaments before, the latest coming during the 2017 Euros where England beat Portugal 2-1, though it's the only time the Lionesses have managed to win under her watch.

By contrast, England's opponents Germany have won every match they've played at major tournaments with Monzul as ref – but as we all know, records are there to broken.


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