UEFA make final decision on controversial referee for England vs Netherlands semi-final

UEFA have made a final decision on the referee for England’s Euro 2024 semi-final clash with the Netherlands.

UEFA have made a final decision on the referee for England’s Euro 2024 semi-final clash with the Netherlands after initially assigning the game to a convicted ‘match-fixer’, it has been claimed.

On Sunday UEFA revealed that Felix Zwayer would officiate the Three Lions’ semi-final in Dortmund, despite having once served a six-month ban after being found to have accepted a €300 (£253.82) bribe from fellow referee Robert Hoyzer in a 2005 scandal.

As per Mail Sports, Zwayer will remain in charge of Wednesday’s encounter, with UEFA standing by their initial appointment.

 

Zwayer was implicated in a scandal that centred around Hoyzer, who took bribes to fix several matches.

The 43-year-old, who was then a linesman, assisted Hoyzer in one match after taking a payment of £253.82.

He went on to be banned from officiating for six months in a move that was kept quiet until the German publication Zeit broke the story years later.

The Zeit investigation found that during an investigation into Hoyzer, who was sentenced to two years and five months in prison, Zwayer’s apartment was searched with the official found to have behaved in a “grossly anti-sporting” manner.

The probe also found that Zwayer failed to report Hoyzer’s match-fixing “of which he was aware” and that he accepted the aforementioned bribe from his colleague before SV Wuppertal and Werder Bremen Amateure’s game in May 2004.

 

Munich criminal judge Rainer Koch found that while Zwayer took the bribe, he also contributed to solving the case while no intentional errors could be found against him.

The referee also has a history with Jude Bellingham, after he officiated a Bundesliga game between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich in 2021.

Felix Zwayer was once implicated in a match-fixing scandal (Getty)


Felix Zwayer was once implicated in a match-fixing scandal (Getty)

Zwayer turned down Dortmund’s appeals for a penalty during the encounter, while he later awarded Bayern a spot-kick after penalising Mats Hummels for handball.

 

“You can look at a lot of the decisions in the game,” Bellingham said in a post-match TV interview.

“You give a referee, that has match-fixed before, the biggest game in Germany. What do you expect?”

Bellingham was subsequently fined €40,000 (£33,843) and investigated by German police, while Zwayer took a two-month break from officiating.