In this list, the African continent will be well represented with altogether 16 of its nationals. There are 6 main referees and 10 assistants. A great first for the CAF (Confederation of African Football) which will be a little more precocious during this great football competition.
It will be remembered that in 2002 at the World Cup in Japan and South Korea, there were five African referees who officiated. Only one of them has already officiated at the World Cup. This is Gambian Bakary Gassama. It will not be his first experience in Russia.
The 39-year-old Gambian had already refereed the pool meet between the Netherlands and Chile at the 2014 World Cup. He also led several matches of the 2012 Olympics, the CAN 2015 final, several league finals champions in Africa and a 2017 Confederations Cup match. Bakary Gassama recently refereed the CHAN 2018 final.
The other five main African referees are Algerian Mehdi Abid Charef (37, the youngest of the six), Senegal’s Malang Diedhiou (44, the oldest of the six), the Egyptian Ghead Grisha (42), the Zambian Janny Sikazwe (38) and Ehtiopien Bamlak Tessema Weyesa (38).
The ten African assistants are: Moroccan Redouane Achik, Sudanese Waleed Ahmed, Burundian Jean-Claude Birumushahu, Senegalese Djibril Camara and El Hadji Malick Samba, Angolan Jerson Emiliano Dos Santos, Algerian Abdelhak Etchiali, Tunisian Anouar Hmila, Kenyan Marwa Range and South African Zakhele Thusi Siwela.
For now, the selected players from the five qualified African countries (Egypt, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia) are not yet known. But this should not be long since coaches from different countries are working hard to communicate soon.