Howard Webb: Biography highlights
Howard Webb MBE is a former professional referee, who officiated primarily in the Premier League. Having always loved football, Howard opted to follow the refereeing route after realising he would not reach the heights he wanted as a player.
Full biography of Howard Webb
Howard Webb’s Background
He has gone on to become one of the country’s most respected referees in both domestic and international football. To pursue his refereeing aspirations, Howard is currently on a career break from his role as a police sergeant with South Yorkshire Police Force, where he has been a serving officer for 15 years.
Howard quickly progressed through the ranks via the Northern Counties East League, Football league and Football Conference and in 2003 he became a Premier League referee. Just two years later, Howard became a FIFA listed referee and began officiating international fixtures. During his successful career, Howard has officiated on some of the biggest stages of domestic and international football – European Under 21 Championship, FA Cup Final, Carling Cup Final, FIFA under 21 World Cup, UEFA Euro 2008 and Superliga in North America.
2010 was to prove a high profile year for Howard – in May he was the referee at the Champions League Final and in the summer he was one of 14 European referees (and the only British representative) to officiate at the FIFA World Cup in South Africa. The pinnacle of his career was to come during the 2010 FIFA World Cup when he had the honour of refereeing the final, making him the first ever referee to officiate both the World Cup and Champions League final in the same year.
Throughout his professional career, Webb drew praise for his authoritative and respected approach to refereeing from football bodies, pundits, colleagues, players and managers. He announced his retirement in August 2014 to become the technical director of the Professional Game Match Officials Board.
It was announced that from March 2017 he would become the Manager of Video Assistant Referee Operations for Major League Soccer’s Professional Referee Organization (PRO). He is now the General Manager of PRO and still heavily involved with VAR matters globally.
He also served as a TV analyst for TSN this summer during the FIFA 2018 World Cup in Russia.