World Cup Final referee Pierluigi Collina will be in control of Real Madrid’s centenary match next match despite being the centre of controversy in Italy.

Collina will officiate at the match in the Estadio Bernabeu next Wednesday in which Madrid play an International All-Star team. The match will climax the world and European champions’ sensational centenary year.

But Collina was also condemned in Italy yesterday for his blunder in Milan’s weekend win over Roma. The referees’ assessment panel, viewing video replays, stated that Collina should have penalised Filippo Inzaghi for handball in the build-up to Milan’s match-winning goal.

The incident added more fuel to the anti-referee campaign launched by Roma president Franco Sensi. He says he is producing a dossier to prove that referees are biased in favour of northern Italian teams.
By Keir Radnedge