WORLD CUP 2018 COUNTDOWNâ€¦
9 – matches at the FIFA World Cup have been officiated by Uzbekistanâ€™s Ravshan Irmatov, more than any other referee in the tournamentâ€™s history.
He took charge of a World Cup fixture for the first time during the Opening Match of the 2010 World Cup between hosts South Africa and Mexico. Four more games at that edition followed, including the semi-final between the Netherlands and Uruguay, before Irmatov added another four to his total at Brazil 2014, putting him ahead of Franceâ€™s Joel Quiniou, Mexicoâ€™s Benito Archundia and Uruguayâ€™s Jorge Larrionda, who have all refereed eight World Cup games each.
Irmatov became a FIFA referee in 2003 and since then, his ability and authority on the pitch have continued to improve.
Aside from the World Cup, he has overseen four Asian Champions League finals, two FIFA Club World Cup finals and an Asian Cup final, as well as countless other big matches that he has handled with calm and confidence.
Irmatov will have the opportunity to extend his record in Russia, as he was included on the list of referees for the 2018 World Cup.