Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Bibiana Steinhaus To Become First Female Referee In Bundesliga History

Bibiana Steinhaus To Become First Female Referee In Bundesliga History

38-year-old Steinhaus has taken charge of Bundesliga 2 matches since 2011, as well as refereeing the final of the women's London Olympic Games tournament between Japan and the United States, and has been rewarded for her performances with promotion to the Bundesliga for next season.

Bibiana Steinhaus has officiated men's soccer matches before in Germany's top-flight Bundesliga, but always as an assistant on the sidelines. Though it's an enormous honor and a terrific story, Steinhaus doesn't want her first season in the Bundesliga to be judged exclusively on the basis of her being female.

"When he informed me in our telephone call about the decision of the referee's commission, I was quite speechless".

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Having refereed 80 second-tier games in Germany already, Steinhaus understands the challenge. "On one hand it is confirmation of my hard work, and on the other hand it is a great incentive to continue to work hard", she added.

Steinhaus coolly brushed Guardiola's arm off and the Spaniard was criticised in the German media for inappropriate conduct.

Bibiana Steinhaus has been appointed as the first female referee in the Bundesliga.

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"I am used to this pressure and am convinced I will find my feet quickly in the Bundesliga", she said.

DFB president Reinhard Grindel hopes Steinhaus will inspire girls to get involved in football. "I'm very much looking forward to the task that awaits me", Steinhaus told BBC Sport.

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