Argentina’s Nestor Pitana to referee World Cup final

Referee Nestor Pitana during the Group F match between Mexico and Sweden at the Ekaterinburg Arena in Russia June 27, 2018. — Reuters pic
Referee Nestor Pitana during the Group F match between Mexico and Sweden at the Ekaterinburg Arena in Russia June 27, 2018. — Reuters pic

MOSCOW, July 13 — Nestor Pitana of Argentina will referee the World Cup final between France and Croatia, Fifa announced yesterday.

Pitana, a former actor who has already refereed four games including the tournament opener between host nation Russia and Saudi Arabia and France’s quarter-final win over Uruguay, will take charge of Sunday’s showpiece at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.

He will have two more Argentines, Hernan Maidana and Juan Pablo Belatti as assistant referees. Dutch referee Bjorn Kuipers will be the fourth official backed up by another Dutchman, Erwin Zeinstra.

In addition to handling a French victory, Pitana was also in charge when Croatia beat Denmark in the last 16 on penalties.

The 43-year-old’s other game in Russia was Sweden’s 3-0 group-stage victory over Mexico.

In Brazil in 2014, Pitana refereed four matches. The last was France’s 1-0 loss to eventual champions Germany in the quarter-finals.

For the third-place playoff between Belgium and England in Saint Petersburg tomorrow, Fifa have selected Iranian referee Alireza Faghani. —AFP

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