After having attended the UEFA Centre of Refereeing Excellence (CORE) Introductory Course in October, Elite Category Match Officials Fyodor Zammit (referee), Luke Portelli and Emanuel Grech (assistant referees) were back at the UEFA Headquarters in Nyon last week to attend a 7 day Consolidation Course.
The ten-day Introductory Course had dealt with various technical aspects of refereeing and how to improve their physical fitness. For the past seven months, the three match officials worked very hard to reach various targets and objectives and were obliged to report to their coaches at the end of each month.
On Wednesday evening at a special event at the UEFA Headquarters in Nyon, Senior Course Leader David Elleray awarded the three Maltese officials with the highest level of certification, consisting of a Diploma of Excellence.
The three match officials were under the professional guidance of Referee’s Coach Peter Jones (England), Assistant Referee’s Coach Leif Lindberg (Sweden) and Fitness Coach Joao Dias (Portugal), assisted by Vesa Kuparinen (Finland). Lindberg was the senior assistant referee to Pierluigi Collina in the 2002 World Cup Final – Germany vs Brazil.
In his feedback to the MFA Referees’ Department, Peter Jones praised the three Maltese match officials under his care: “They have been so professional. They could not have done any better…they are a credit to Malta. You should be proud of them!”
On behalf of his refereeing team, a delighted Fyodor Zammit stated that: “I am very happy to have completed this intensive UEFA Programme for young referees.
The last two years have been outstanding for me – 15 Premier League matches and an FA Trophy Semi-Final last season and 14 Premier League League matches, the Division 1 Championship Decider and a Championship Play-Off in Andorra this season.
I am thankful for my family and friends for their support, and for the MFA Referees’ Department and the Referees’ Committee for believing so much in youth and for giving me the opportunity to develop my refereeing skills, both locally and abroad.”