World Cup Referee Appointments: Saturday, June 14

The group stage gets started in earnest on Saturday with four matches. Arguably the biggest (at least in terms of attention) will be England v. Italy.

Bjorn Kuipers of the Netherlands has been given the reigns of that one. Kuipers (above) had a solid Champions League Final, despite popular perception, and his strength in man management makes him a good choice here.

Already, we’re starting to see who FIFA favors amongst the referees. Kuipers and Italy’s Nicola Rizzoli have been early favorites for the final, and each has already been given some of the early showpieces.

USA’s Mark Geiger steps out for the first time for Colombia v. Greece.

Uruguay and Costa Rica have pulled Dr. Dreamy himself: Germany’s Dr. Felix Brych. Excellent referee and none too hard on the eyes.

Here are the appointments:

Colombia v. GreeceReferee: Mark Geiger (USA)
Assistant: Sean Hurd (USA)
Assistant: John Fletcher (CAN)
Fourth Official: Alireza Faghani (IRAN)

Uruguay v. Costa Rica

Referee: Dr. Felix Brych (GER)
Assistant: Mark Borsch (GER)
Assistant: Stefan Lupp (GER)
Fourth Official: Victor Carillo (PER)

England v. ItalyReferee: Bjorn Kuipers (NED)
Assistant: Sander Van Roekel (NED)
Assistant: Erwin Zeinstra (NED)
Referee: Walter Lopez (GUA)

Ivory Coast v. Japan

Referee: Enrique Osses (CHI)
Assistant: Carlos Astroza (CHI)
Assistant: Sergio Roman (CHI)
Fourth Official: Alioum (CMR)

Featured Photo: Bjorn Kuipers (uk.eurosport.yahoo.com)

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