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Top South African referee Gomes confirms retirement

22:16 GMT+3 19/12/2022
Victor Gomes, 2022 World Cup, December 2022
Acclaimed South African referee Victor Gomes has announced he has retired following his return from the 2022 Fifa World Cup.
  • Gomes makes a decision about his career
  • He says he will retire
  • This comes after officiating at the World Cup

WHAT HAPPENED? Gomes officiated at the World Cup in Qatar and the tournament was his swansong. Before the global football showcase, there were reports that he would step down when he returns from Qatar.

He has now confirmed he has retired at the age of 40. Since debuting in the Premier Soccer League in 2008, Gomes went on to be listed on the Fifa panel in 2011.

WHAT GOMES SAID: “The dream started when I was only a child. Now that I’ve achieved the World Cup I’m grateful and ready to spend time with my family,” said Gomes on Marawa Sports Worldwide as per iDiski Times.

“The eight-hour flight was enough for me to make the decision to retire. We discussed this with my wife. I believe I’ve been better than those who have come before me and I want others to come and also do better than me.

“Football is in my blood, I will leave the field but I will still contribute towards lifting South Africa’s flag high.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: The just-ended World Cup was the epitome of Gomes’ illustrious career. He was the centre referee in two World Cup games, taking charge of France’s 4-1 victory over Australia as well as Japan’s 2-1 win against Spain.

He was also the fourth official when eventual champions Argentina beat the Netherlands via a penalty shootout in the quarter-finals. Not only did Gomes establish himself as one of the best referees in South Africa, but Africa as well. He took charge of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations final between Egypt and Senegal.

STORY IN THREE PHOTOS:

WHAT NEXT FOR GOMES? Gomes' next move is yet to be confirmed. Having said he will continue raising South Africa’s flag, it is not yet clear in which capacity he will serve in football.