Go on, make that joke already: “Well, at least a couple of Americans are going to the World Cup this summer…”
Yawn. But seriously, they are.
On Thursday the official list for 2018 World Cup referees was released by FIFA as U.S. referees Mark Geiger and Jair Marrufo were both named in the World Cup officiating pool.
The USA are the only nation to have two referees selected with 36 referees selected overall and 63 assistant referees also making the cut with 46 nations represented.
Geiger refereed three games at the 2014 World Cup as he became the first American to officiate a knockout round game with France beating Nigeria, while this will be Marrufo’s first World Cup.
Assistant referees Frank Anderson and Corey Rockwell will also represent the USA and, given the fact that the U.S. will not be competing in the tournament, perhaps the officiating crews from the U.S. have a decent chance of refereeing deep into the tournament as there will be no country clash for them to worry about.