The referee of Uefa’s Women Champions League final is Esther Staubli. But who is the referee from Switzerland? She’s a former football player and “I am not proud of” the number of yellow and red cards I got in my career.
— UEFA Women's CL (@UWCL) 30 april 2015
David Wiederkehr from the Sontags Zeitung, a newspaper in Switzerland visited the Women’ World Cup referees when they trained in Zurich last month. That’s where he talked to referee Esther Staubli. He describes the Swiss referee as a “hothead” while she was a player.
Staubli is 35 years old and is born in Bern. She has studied Agronomy and teaches at the College of Agriculture in Zollikofen. She is also qualified to referee men’s games in the Swiss top leagues. During the 2014-2015 season she made her debut in the Challenge League, the second level. She officiated four games on that level so far. She’s likely to be the next female referee who officiates in the Super League. That would be the first woman to referee a game on the highest league in Switzerland since the retirement of Nicole Petignat, who quit 6 years ago. Petignat was the first female ref in an international men’s competition by Uefa. She made her debut in the game AIK Stockholm – Fylkyr Reykjavik in August 2003.
Esther Staubli will also go the the World Cup in Canada. She missed this tournament 4 years ago due to a stress fracture. “Since that happened, I learned that health is the most important thing there is”, she told a magazine on women’s football. She adds now after her WC election: “The World Cup participation is a reward for the effort that I put into it.”
Esther Staubli describes herself
How does she describe herself? “I was an emotional player. As a referee I have a certain degree of understanding and don’t take anything personal during the game”. She adds: “I am not proud of” the number of yellow and red cards I got in my career.
Massimo Busacca, Staubli’s countryman and the Fifa referee boss, stresses that has “great potentional” to become a top class referee.
Staubli will be assisted by Belinda Brem and Susanne Küng. Désirée Grundbacher will act as fourth official and Emilie Aubry is the reserve assistant referee.
The game between 1. FFC Frankfurt and Paris Saint-Germain will be played on May 14th at 6pm CET.