AFC lifts sanctions on Vietnamese referees abroad

The Asian Football Confederation recently decided to lift its ban on Vietnamese referees and officials from attending international events outside Vietnam as of next year, local Tuoi Tre newspaper reported. The sanction was issued following the match-fixing scandal that involved seven Vietnamese football internationals at the 23rd South East Asian Games in 2005 in the Philippines. With the decision, FIFA-sanctioned referees and officials from Vietnam will be eligible to return to organizing boards abroad.

The daily newspaper quoted an AFC report that Vietnam is to have three male referees and two sideline assistants acknowledged by FIFA as of 1 January 2007. Referees Duong Van Hien, Vo Minh Tri, and Dang Thanh Ha as well as two others Nguyen Xuan and Pham Manh Long will then be allowed to work overseas. For women game officials, sideline assistants Phung Tien, Cong Dung and Thanh Thuy will also be bestowed FIFA titles next year.