South American referees could take charge of Euro 2020 group-stage matches and Champions League games in an agreement reached with UEFA.
“The agreement would also see European referees officiating at South American matches,’’ the European governing body said on Wednesday.
The deal came as UEFA and the South American confederation CONMEBOL agreed a new memorandum of understanding at UEFA headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland.
Under a referee exchange, match officials from Europe and South America will be appointed to oversee international matches on each other’s continent.
“This exchange programme could possibly see a team of UEFA match officials appointed for the group stage of the Copa America and a team of CONMEBOL match officials appointed for the group stage of UEFA EURO 2020.
“In addition, there will also be similar exchanges between the UEFA Champions League/Copa Libertadores and the UEFA Europa League/Copa Sudamericana.
“The possibility of staging intercontinental matches between teams from Europe and South America will also be examined in the coming months,’’ UEFA said in a statement.
It noted that it would cover both men and women’s football and across a variety of age groups.
World governing body FIFA has already agreed to expand its Club World Cup to a 24-team summer tournament from 2021.
The inaugural expanded event is due to be held in China.
According to UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, today’s agreement marks a first step in allowing UEFA and CONMEBOL to closely cooperate so that we can share expertise.
“We can also share knowledge for the development of the game on both continents,’’ Ceferin added. (dpa/NAN)