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Martin Hansson

Martin Hansson
Full name Martin Hansson
Born (1971-04-06) 6 April 1971
Holmsjö, Sweden
Other occupation Full-time referee
Years League Role
1996– Superettan Referee
1999– Allsvenskan Referee
Years League Role
2001–2014 FIFA listed Referee

Martin Hansson (born April 6, 1971) is a Swedish football referee. Hansson currently resides in Holmsjö. He has been a full international referee for FIFA since 2001.

Hansson works as a firefighter outside refereeing and is fluent in Swedish, English and German. His hobbies include hunting and angling.[1]


  • Life and career 1
  • See also 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Life and career

Martin Hansson started refereeing at the age of 15 at his own club. He subsequently obtained his FIFA badge before the age of 30. He was selected as a referee for the 2007 FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Canada, where he refereed the match between Argentina and the Czech Republic on June 30, 2007. He then took charge of the game between the USA and Poland on July 3, 2007. Hansson also officiated the 2006 Euro U-21 final between the Netherlands and Ukraine in Portugal.

Hansson currently referees matches on a frequent basis in the highest Swedish league, the Allsvenskan, as well as the UEFA Cup and the UEFA Champions League. He came under criticism for a 95th-minute penalty decision in a Champions League match between Atlético Madrid and Liverpool when Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard went down in the box when barely minimal contact was made; the match finished 1–1 after Gerrard converted the last-minute spot kick. After the match, Gerrard himself admitted that he would have been "livid" had a similar decision been given under reversed circumstances.[2]

Hansson was the referee for the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup Final. During this match, Hansson failed to award Brazil a goal after a header by Kaká crossed the United States goal line before being cleared, but Brazil's eventual victory quelled the criticism.[3]

Hansson was preselected as a referee for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.[4] While refereeing the second leg of the France vs Republic of Ireland 2010 FIFA World Cup play-off, Hansson was unable to see a handball by French captain Thierry Henry, which permitted France to score the decisive extra-time goal against Ireland in their World Cup second leg play-off at the Stade de France on November 18, 2009.[5] This was his third major controversy in a high profile match in 13 months.[3]

He came under the spotlight once again during the first leg of the 2010 Champions League last 16 match between FC Porto and Arsenal. He allowed Porto players to take a quick indirect free kick deep inside the Arsenal penalty area despite Arsenal's players not being in position, which led to the second goal for the Portuguese side.[6][7] Although a controversial decision, the Laws of the Game do not state that the defense must be set for any free kick.[8]

Ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Sveriges Television showed director Mattias Löw's award-winning documentary Rättskiparen (English Title: The Referee) about Martin Hansson's road to South Africa.

On 8 October 2013, Hansson announced that he was retiring from refereeing.

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ (French)Arsenal trop fragile, L'Équipe, Feb 17 2010, accessed Feb 19 2010
  7. ^ (French) Ligue des champions : l'arbitre de France-Irlande refait parler de lui, Le Monde, Feb 18 2010, accessed Feb 19 2010
  8. ^

External links

  • FIFA profile
  • France beats Ireland with irregular goal
  • Documentary about referee Martin Hansson
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