May 29 – The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has taken the rare step of banning a World Cup referee for six months for poor officiating in the Continent’s showpiece Champions League final.
Gehad Grisha of Egypt took charge of the first leg of the final between Morocco’s Wyded of Casablanca and Esperance de Tunis last Friday which ended in a 1-1 draw.
In a game full of incessant fouling and bickering, Grisha dished out four yellow cards in the opening 45 minutes, then twice went to VAR, first time to rule out a goal for the hosts due to a handball, then failing to award Wydad a penalty.
Wydad’s other main complaint was a red card shown to midfielder Ibrahim Nakach after he picked up two yellows in only five minutes.
This led the Moroccans to lodge a complaint to CAF who decided that Grisha, who officiated in the 2018 World Cup, should be suspended for six months.
A statement from CAF said: “CAF decided to suspend the Egyptian referee Gehad Grisha for six months due to his poor performance at the first of leg of Champions League final match between Wydad Casablanca and Esperance de Tunis which ended in a 1-1 in Morocco last Friday.”
Interestingly the complaint was sent directly to CAF president Ahmad Ahmad who recently fired his Egyptian general secretary and replaced him with a Moroccan.
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