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Alireza Faghani (Persian: عليرضا فغانى‎, born 21 March 1978) is an Iranian international football referee who has been officiating in the Persian Gulf Pro League for several seasons and has been on the FIFA list since 2008. Faghani has refereed important matches such as the 2014 AFC Champions League Final, the 2015 AFC Asian Cup Final, the 2015 FIFA Club World Cup Final , the 2016 Olympic football final match. He has refereed matches in the 2017 Liga 1 , 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and the 2019 AFC Asian Cup. Alireza migrated to Australia in September 2019.

Alireza Faghani
Ger-Mex (19).jpg
Faghani refereeing Germany vs. Mexico in 2018 World Cup
Born (1978-03-21) 21 March 1978 (age 41)
Kashmar, Iran
Other occupation Municipality employee
Years League Role
2000–2008 Azadegan League Referee
2007–2019 Persian Gulf Pro League Referee
2019– A-League Referee
Years League Role
2008– FIFA listed Referee

Early lifeEdit

He was born on 21 March 1978 in Kashmar, a city near Mashhad, Iran. His nickname is Behrooz (بهروز). His father, Mohammad Faghani (محمد فغانی) was also a football referee.

Faghani was part of the youth team of Bank Melli, and also played for Shahab Khodro, Etka, and Niroye Zamini. He also played in Iran's League 2 which is the third tier in the Iranian football pyramid. However, in the end he decided to be a football referee.

Refereeing careerEdit

Faghani became a FIFA referee in 2008, only a year after officiating in the top flight league in Iran. After becoming a FIFA referee Faghani has moved up the ladder really fast especially in Asia. After only one year of international experience Faghani took charge of the 2009 AFC President's Cup Final which was played between Regar-TadAZ Tursunzoda and Dordoi-Dynamo Naryn which was won 2–0 by the hosts.[1] A year later he was again in charge of a final but this time it was a much more important final in the 2010 AFC Challenge Cup where the winner qualified for the 2011 AFC Asian Cup. He gave a red card to the North Korean defender in the 32nd minute but North Korea went on to defeat Turkmenistan in penalties.[2]

He was named as the fourth referee for the opening match of the 2014 FIFA World Cup between Brazil and Croatia.[3] He also refereed the 2014 AFC Champions League Final first leg match between Al-Hilal and Western Sydney Wanderers. He is also one of the officials of the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, refereeing his first match in Group B between Saudi Arabia and China that ended 0–1. Faghani awarded Saudi Arabia a penalty kick but Naif Hazazi missed it.

He was appointed to referee the 2015 AFC Asian Cup Final, which was contested by South Korea and Australia. Faghani was the referee in the 2015 FIFA Club World Cup Final between Club Atlético River Plate and FC Barcelona. He was also the referee in the 2016 Indian Super League Final between Kerala Blasters and ATK.[4] Perhaps the most important match in which he was the main referee was the 2016 Olympic football final match between host Brazil and Germany.

In spite of great performances as referee of international competitions, he is usually criticized for looking down on the players of Iranian domestic league.[5] Changing the champions of 2014–15 Persian Gulf Pro League as a result of a series of wrong decision in two important games between championship rivals (Sepahan S.C. 2-1 Tractor Sazi F.C.[6] and Tractor Sazi F.C. 3-3 Naft Tehran F.C.[7]), blowing the final whistle in a knock-out match between Padideh F.C. and Naft Tehran F.C. in 2015–16 Hazfi Cup after 4th shoot of the first team in penalty shootouts before the winner is determined[8], unnecessarily touching players which can make the games out of his control[9], and making teams ten men for the least or no fouls in several games, are some of his mistakes.

Faghani was referee in six matches of the 2017 Liga 1 in Indonesia and two matches of the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia.

Faghani was appointed to be a referee for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.[10] After the conclusion of the round of 16, it was announced that Faghani was one of 17 referees who had been selected to be assigned matches for the remainder of the tournament.[11]

He was also referee of the 2018 AFF Championship final between Vietnam - Malaysia in its 2nd leg. On 5 December 2018, it was announced that Faghani had been appointed to referee at the 2019 AFC Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates.[12]

In 2019 he and his family migrated from Iran to Australia, and he was subsequently signed on by the A-League to the full time match official panel, in addition to duties in rounds prior, he was given the responsibility of officiating the first Sydney Derby of the season, with the Wanderers winning 1-0, and Faghani being praised for his decision making.


FIFA World CupEdit

Alireza Faghani presents a yellow cards during the France vs Argentina match in the round of 16 of 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Alireza Faghani referring the Serbia vs Brazil match in the group stage of 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Alireza Faghani referring the France vs Argentina match in the round of 16 of 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Alireza Faghani referring the Japan vs. Turkmenistan match in the 17th edition of the AFC Asian Cup.
2018 FIFA World Cup – Russia
Date Match Venue Round
17 June 2018   Germany  Mexico Moscow Group stage
27 June 2018   Serbia  Brazil Moscow Group stage
30 June 2018   France  Argentina Kazan Round of 16
14 July 2018   Belgium  England Saint Petersburg Third place play-off

FIFA Confederations CupEdit

2017 FIFA Confederations Cup – Russia
Date Match Venue Round
22 June 2017   Germany  Chile Kazan Group stage
27 June 2017   Portugal  Chile Kazan Semi-finals

Summer OlympicEdit

2016 Summer Olympics – Rio de Janeiro
Date Match Venue Round
4 August 2016   Germany  Mexico Salvador Group stage
10 August 2016   Denmark  Brazil Salvador Group stage
20 August 2016   Germany  Brazil Rio de Janeiro Gold medal match

AFC Asian CupEdit

2015 AFC Asian Cup – Australia
Date Match Venue Round
10 January 2015   Saudi Arabia  China PR Brisbane Group stage
13 January 2015   Kuwait  South Korea Canberra Group stage
16 January 2015   Iraq  Japan Brisbane Group stage
23 January 2015   Japan  United Arab Emirates Sydney Quarter-finals
31 January 2015   South Korea  Australia Sydney Final
2019 AFC Asian Cup – United Arab Emirates
Date Match Venue Round
9 January 2019   Japan  Turkmenistan Abu Dhabi Group stage
20 January 2019   Jordan  Vietnam Dubai Round of 16

FIFA Club World CupEdit

2013 FIFA Club World Cup – Morocco
Date Match Venue Round
14 December 2013 Raja Casablanca    Monterrey Agadir Quarter-finals
21 December 2013 Guangzhou Evergrande    Atlético Mineiro Marrakesh Third place match
2015 FIFA Club World Cup – Japan
Date Match Venue Round
16 December 2015 América    TP Mazembe Osaka Match for fifth place
20 December 2015 River Plate    Barcelona Yokohama Final


Tournaments Constester Years Matches     Average     Average
FIFA World Cup FIFA 2018 4 18 4.5 0 0.00
FIFA World Cup qualification (AFC) FIFA 2011– 11 39 3.54 0 0.00
FIFA Confederations Cup FIFA 2017 2 11 5.50 0 0.00
Summer Olympics IOCFIFA 2016 3 9 3.00 0 0.00
Friendlies FIFA 2014- 9 33 3.67 1 0.11
AFC Asian Cup AFC 2015; 2019 6 27 4.50 0 0.00
AFC Asian Cup qualification AFC 2015 2 6 3.00 0 0.00
FIFA U-20 World Cup FIFA 2013 2 6 3.00 0 0.00
FIFA Club World Cup FIFA 2012; 2013; 2015 4 18 4.50 1 0.06
AFC Champions League AFC 2010-2018 40 158 3.95 4 0.10
AFC Champions League qualification AFC 2011 1 3 3.00 0 0.00
  Indian Super League   AIFF 2016 1 3 3.00 0 0.00
  Liga 1   IFLS 2017 6 14 2.33 1 0.17
  Persian Gulf Pro League   FFIRI 2007-Present ? ? ? ? ?
  Hazfi Cup   FFIRI 2015-2016 ? ? ? ? ?
  Azadegan League   FFIRI 2000-2008 ? ? ? ? ?
Totals 2010– 91 345 3.79 7 0.08
Matches as referee are correct as of 18 January 2019




  1. ^ "2009 AFC President's Cup Final". AFC. Retrieved 2019-01-18.
  2. ^ "2010 AFC Challenge Cup Final". AFC. Retrieved 2019-01-18.
  3. ^
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  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ "2018 FIFA World Cup™ - News - 36 referees and 63 assistant referees appointed as Russia 2018 Match Officials -". Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  11. ^ "2018 FIFA World Cup™ - News - 17 referees, 37 assistant referees and 10 Video Assistant Referees appointed for next phase of 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ -". Retrieved 2019-06-27.
  12. ^ "Largest-ever cast of match officials appointed for UAE 2019". Retrieved 2019-07-04.
  13. ^ "Alireza Faghani: matches as referee". Retrieved 18 January 2019.

External linksEdit

Sporting positions
Preceded by
  Walter López
FIFA Club World Cup final match referees
Succeeded by
  Janny Sikazwe
Preceded by
  Ravshan Irmatov
AFC Asian Cup Final referee
Succeeded by
  Ravshan Irmatov
Preceded by
  Mark Clattenburg
FIFA Men's Olympic Football Tournament Final referee
Succeeded by
Most recent