German referee previously banned over match-fixing will oversee England v Netherlands

Credit: PA

A German referee who was previously banned for his part in a match-fixing scandal, and who has a history with Jude Bellingham, is set to take charge of England's Euro 2024 semi-final against the Netherlands on Wednesday.

Felix Zwayer, 43, was given a six-month ban by the German football federation in 2006, having worked as an assistant referee alongside Robert Hoyzer.

Zwayer was one of the officials who helped to reveal Hoyzer's match-fixing, with the relatively short duration of Zwayer's ban a recognition of his contribution.

Hoyzer received a lifetime ban from any role in football.

England midfielder Bellingham was fined by the German federation after he referenced Zwayer's involvement in that scandal after a defeat for his old club Borussia Dortmund against Bayern Munich in 2021.

When asked by ITV News Sports Editor Steve Scott if having the same referee for Wednesday made for an "uncomfortable situation", Shaw said "no, not at all".

"I think we have to respect UEFA on whoever they decide to pick as the ref," Shaw said at a press conference on Monday.

"That won't change anything about us, I think we still just focus on the game in hand, not too much about what refs we've been given or this and that. So for us it won't make any difference."

Scott followed up by asking whether Shaw had ever played in a game and thought the referee "had it in for" him.

"Not really. Sometimes in the heated moment you get angry in games and you might think that, but no. And like I said, look, whatever ref's been picked has been picked, we just have to be ready and not focus about that."

Zwayer will lead an all-German officiating team at Wednesday's match in Dortmund which also includes his assistants Stefan Lupp and Marco Achmuller, plus VAR Bastian Dankert.

The Football Association has declined to comment on the matter, while tournament organisers UEFA have been approached for comment.

It will be the second time Zwayer has overseen a match involving the Dutch, having also refereed their last-16 victory over Romania on Tuesday.

Before that, Zwayer had refereed Italy's opening match against Albania and Portugal's win over Turkey in the second round of group matches.

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