Szymon Marciniak remains the referee of the UEFA Champions League final, in which Manchester City will meet Inter Milan on June 10 in Istanbul, UEFA announced.
The controversy around the 42-year-old Polish arbitrator arose in connection with the participation in a conference organized by one of the leaders of the Confederation, considered to be far-right, Sławomir Mentzen. The letter regarding Marciniak sent the “Never Again” ociation, which fights against discrimination, to UEFA.
UEFA has announced that, based on the information received, it confirms that Marciniak will act as a referee during the UEFA Champions League final 2023. (PAP)
The European football headquarters revealed the content of the Polish referee’s statement, which, in its opinion, is crucial to “dispel fears and ensure transparency”.
“I would like to sincerely apologize for my involvement and any harm that my participation in the +Everest+ event may have caused” – began Marciniak, who admitted that he understood his concern and disappointment with this activity.
He further explained that he had been misled and was completely unaware that the event “was linked to a Polish far-right movement.” “If I had known, I would have categorically declined the invitation,” he pointed out.
Marciniak argued that he wholeheartedly condemns all forms of hatred, discrimination or intolerance, which have no place in sport or society.
He also pledged to be more vigilant in analyzing events and organizations with which he will be ociated.
“I pledge to learn from this experience and ure you that such errors of judgment will not occur in the future,” he wrote, apologizing to all those whose trust he had breached and accepting any consequences of “improper participation” in the event.
“Thank you for your understanding, I humbly ask for the opportunity to make amends and regain trust through my future actions,” he concluded.
In its position, UEFA indicated that it had accepted Marciniak’s statement, in which he apologized and provided explanations, but also contacted the +Never Again+ ociation, which alerted UEFA about the arbitrator’s participation in the Katowice event.
“She asked that Marciniak remain as referee for the upcoming UEFA Champions League final, firmly arguing that his removal would undermine the promotion of anti-discrimination,” it was reported.
Based on these premises, UEFA confirms that Marciniak will act as a referee during the Champions League final.
In December, Marciniak was the first Pole in history to referee the World Cup final between Argentina and France in Qatar. He has been in charge of seven matches this season in the Champions League, including the return semi-final between Manchester City and Real Madrid. On May 22, he was appointed as the referee of the Champions League final, in which Manchester City will meet Inter Milan on June 10 in Istanbul.
For the second time in history, the same referee will be the arbitrator of the two most important matches of the season – in 2016, the Englishman Mark Clattenburg officiated the Champions League final and then the decisive match of the European Championship. (PAP)