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Referee Felix Zwayer Gets UEFA Support Despite Bellingham Past

by: EdwardB


UEFA has expressed its full support for Felix Zwayer, who will officiate the Euro 2024 semi-final match between England and the Netherlands, despite Jude Bellingham unverified match-fixing accusation against the referee three years ago. The governing body is not worried about Zwayer’s suitability to referee the game, even though Bellingham labeled him as “a referee that has match-fixed before” during a well-known incident in 2021. After a match between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich in December 2021, Bellingham cited a case that resulted in the German official’s six-month suspension in 2006.

A Past Scandal and Bellingham Accusations

Felix Zwayer gained attention in 2014 when the German Football Federation (DFB) revealed his punishment for collaborating with referee Robert Hoyzer. Hoyzer received a lifetime ban for his involvement in a match-fixing scheme, while Zwayer, one of the officials who helped uncover the plot, received a comparatively brief suspension.

Felix Zwayer claimed that Hoyzer requested him to manipulate the outcome of a 2. Bundesliga game involving Rot-Weiss Essen and Cologne. He stated, Upon receiving this definite proposal from Hoyzer, I consulted my fellow referees. I want to emphasize again that I refused this offer emphatically and immediately.

He consistently refuted any involvement in the Hoyzer match-fixing scandal during the game between Wuppertal and Werder Bremen B in 2004. The investigation by DFB discovered that he did receive €300 from Hoyzer.

The Bellingham row took place while the midfielder was at Dortmund and revolved around a contentious decision to give Bayern a penalty, leading to a winning goal scored by Robert Lewandowski. Bellingham questioned the decision, suggesting that giving a referee with a history of fixing matches the opportunity to officiate the biggest game in Germany was questionable. He also commented on other calls made during the game. As a result of his remarks, Bellingham was fined €40,000.

UEFA Stands Firm, England Remains Focused

Despite the controversy, UEFA has expressed complete confidence in Felix Zwayer abilities and integrity. The governing body has not wavered in its decision to appoint him as the referee for the crucial semi-final match.

The Football Association has chosen not to get involved in any controversy related to Felix Zwayer, who is considered a top referee and has officiated three matches at Euro 2024. Luke Shaw, questioned on Monday whether if he had any concerns about his enlisting, played the matter down.

We need to show respect to UEFA, no matter which referee they choose, stated the England defender. This doesn’t alter anything for us; we remain concentrated on the current game and not the referees we are assigned.

Shaw mentioned that he had never experienced a feeling that a referee could have a personal bias against him. In the intense moment, one might become upset and consider that possibility, but whoever has been chosen has been chosen, and we just need to be prepared, he stated.

All-German Officiating Team

Felix Zwayer is set to lead a German team during the semi-final match in Dortmund. Stefan Lupp and Marco Achmüller will provide assistance, with Bastian Dankert serving as the video assistant referee.

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