Referee Daniele Orsato emotional after officiating his final champions League match

Referee Daniele Orsato emotional after officiating his final champions League match

Referee Daniele Orsato was seen unable to hold back his tears in what was his last ever Champions League match as an official. The Italian served as the center referee during the UEFA Champions League Semi-final between Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and Borussia Dortmund fixture staged on Tuesday night.

Orsato witnessed the Germans heading to the finals, a journey he will not be a part of, just like PSG.

The veteran ref earned praise on social media for his performance during his final stint, where he made a significant call in the second half. He correctly judged a marginal penalty decision, giving a free-kick instead.

PSG’s Ousmane Dembele was fouled, and after a slight pause, Orsato opted to award a free-kick right on the edge of the area. Replays showed that Mats Hummels’ tackle occurred just before the PSG player entered the penalty box.

However, the 48-year-old will get to blow the final whistle of his career at Euro 2024, after which he will be able to hang up his whistle following 14 years of service to the beautiful game of football.

Orsato’s career peaked when he refereed the 2020 Champions League final, which also featured PSG as the Parisians lost to Bayern Munich at the Estadio Da Luz with no fans present. The 45-year-old has continued to officiate Serie A matches throughout this season.

Another major accolade came in 2020 when Orsato was named by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS) as the best referee of the year.

The Italian has divided opinion with some major calls throughout his time as a referee. Back in 2019, he took charge of a European clash between Manchester United and PSG, dishing out ten cards and sending off Paul Pogba in front of the Old Trafford crowd.

He started refereeing in 2010 and has officiated matches at World Cups and Euro tournaments. During the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, he was slammed by Croatia captain Luka Modric after Croatia lost the semi-final to Argentina. The midfielder described the referee as “one of the worst” and labelled his performance as a “disaster”.

“These things have to be mentioned; I generally don’t do them, but today they have to be done. I don’t like to talk about referees, but this is one of the worst. I don’t have a good memory of [Orsato], he’s a disaster. For me, it wasn’t a penalty. Despite this, I don’t want to detract from Argentina. The penalty killed us. We have to recover for third place and win that match,” stated Modric.

ALSO READ: Dortmund outsmart PSG to book a Champions League final spot

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