World Cup referee gets life ban over bribery

Saudi referee Fahad Al Mirdasi in action during the 2016 Olympic Games match between Germany and Fiji

Saudi Arabia's football federation (SAFF) have announced in a statement that Fahad Al Mirdasi has been banned from officiating in the country for life after the 2018 Kings Cup final.

On Tuesday, it was reported by the federation's disciplinary and ethics committee that Al-Midarsi was suspended immediately after he owned up to accepting a bribe to manipulate the result of a match.

"He confirmed that he had evidence which highlights Al Mirdasi offering help for money".

Al Mirdasi had confessed to offering to fix Saturday's King's Cup final on behalf of the Al Ittihad club, the SAFF said.

"FIFA has requested more information from the SAFF before making any further comments".

Denied from participating in any football-related activity for life, the SAFF has also called on FIFA to withdraw Al Mirdasi from next month's World Cup, while approving his life ban on an global level.

Al Mirdasi was swiftly removed from officiating the game between Al Ittihad and Al Faisaly with former Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg stepping in. Al Ittihad claimed the title with a 3-1 win over Al Faisaly.

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According to the SAFF, 32-year-old Al Mirdasi contacted an Al Ittihad official, who handed the messages over.

He was then pulled from the game with an investigation into the referee by the ethics committee.

Al Mirdasi was one of five Arab referees picked by Federation Internationale de Football Association for the World Cup.

A referee who was scheduled to officiate games at next month's World Cup has been banned for life amid allegations of match-fixing.

A consensus was reached by the SAFF "to deprive him from participating in any football activity for life" when he pleaded guilty to the bribe charge before him.

"Our integrity is above all considerations", said Turki Al-Sheikh, head of the General Authority for Sport.

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