Widely regarded as the best football referee of all time
Refereed the 2002 World Cup Final
Refereed the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final between Bayern Munich and Manchester United
Pierluigi Collina is a former Italian football referee, regarded by many as the best referee of all time. He is still involved in football as a non-paid consultant to the Italian Football Referees Association (AIA) and is a member of the UEFA Referees Committee.
An international referee from 1995 to 2006, Pierluigi was allocated five matches at the 1996 Olympic Games, including the final between Nigeria and Argentina. He refereed the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final between Bayern Munich and Manchester United, citing this as his most memorable game because of the cheers at the end, which he described as ‘lions’ roar’.
In 2002, he reached the pinnacle of his career when he was chosen to referee the World Cup final between Brazil and Germany. He was also referee for the 2004 UEFA Cup final between Valencia and Olympique Marseille. Euro 2004 was his last major international tournament, as he reached the mandatory retirement age of 45 in 2005. His last international match was Portugal – Slovakia (a 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifier).
An Economics graduate of Bologna University and a financial adviser by profession, Pierluigi enrolled on a refereeing course on the suggestion of a friend and made his debut with Serie A in 1991.
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