Manchester City vs Real Madrid: who is the referee for the Champions League tie?
Manchester City host Real Madrid at the Etihad Stadium in the first leg of the 2021/22 Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday.
UEFA, European soccer’s governing body, has appointed Romanian István Kovács as the referee for this week’s Champions League semi-final first leg between Manchester City and Real Madrid.
Kovács, a FIFA international referee since 2010, will be assisted by compatriots Vasile Florin Marinescu and Ovidiu Artene, while Portugal’s Artur Dias will be the fourth official. Germans Marco Fritz and Bastian Danker will be the video assistant referees.
Referee’s first game involving Real Madrid
Kovács also took charge of a City match in the previous round of this season’s Champions League, the 37-year-old overseeing the Sky Blues’ 1-0 first-leg win over Atlético Madrid.
He has never refereed a Champions League game involving Madrid.
Kovács has taken charge of European games involving other LaLiga teams, however. This season, his five Champions League matches have included Sevilla’s 2-1 group-stage defeat to Lille in November.
He was also the referee for Barcelona’s 1-1 draw with Napoli in the Europa League knockout round play-offs in February.
Kovács’ third Man City game this season
It will be the third time Kovács has been appointed to a City game this term, meanwhile. Prior to the quarter-final first leg against Atlético, he refereed the Premier League champions’ 5-1 group-stage win away to Club Brugge.
City host Madrid at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday at 8pm local time (3pm ET/12 noon PT). You’ll be able to follow live text coverage of the game with AS USA: Kieran Quaile will be building up from about an hour ahead of kick-off in Manchester, before talking you through action.
Madrid welcome City to the Bernabéu for the second leg on Wednesday 4 May, with kick-off also at 3pm ET/12 noon PT.