Andre El Haddad

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Andre El Haddad
Full name Andre El Haddad
أندريه الحداد
Born (1971-02-08) 8 February 1971 (age 43)
Zahle, Lebanon
Years League Role
2010– FIFA Referee
2010– AFC Referee

Andre El Haddad (Arabic: اندريه الحداد) (born 8 February 1971 in Zahle, Lebanon) is a Lebanese FIFA registered referee since 2007.

He has officiated several international and continental competitions, most notably the controversial 2014 World Cup Qualifiers third round match between China and Singapore.[1]

AFC Champions League[edit]

Andre El Haddad started officiating matches in the 2010/2011 season. He has officiated 4 matches to date, giving out a total of 20 yellow cards.

2014 FIFA World Cup qualification controversy[edit]

China vs Singapore[edit]

Andre El Haddad was the referee for the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification third round between China and Singapore held on 2 September 2011.[2] He had a good first-half performance with Singapore taking a one goal lead. However, the referee came into the second period making several controversial decisions. Amidst many dubious calls largely in favour of the home side, the referee awarded China a penalty in the 57th minute when the Chinese midfielder Chen Tao and the Singapore goalkeeper, Lionel Lewis, collided after the Chinese player had gotten to the ball first and headed the ball wide of an open goal. The referee still awarded the penalty but it was saved by Lewis.

Ten minutes later, Chinese striker Yu Dabao ran into the box and fell after being held at the shoulder by the Singaporean defender. The Singapore side claimed that there this contact was not the true cause of the Chinese player falling to the ground. This matter is still heatedly debated among both sides. Andre El Haddad then awarded the home team a controversial second penalty which they scored from. With the score at 1–1, Singapore striker Aleksandar Duric got into the box and past a Chinese player before being tripped from behind. It seemed like a penalty on the television screen but no penalty was awarded, and the Singapore coach, Radojko Avramović, was banished to the stands after he approached the main pitch in protest with the referee. China went on to win 2–1.

After the match, he was heavily criticized by both Singaporean and Chinese press. The referee's integrity has since been brought into questioning and there are numerous online petitions for FIFA to investigate the match.[3]

Bahrain vs Indonesia[edit]

Later, in February 2012, in the final game of the Third Round of AFC qualifying, El Haddad refereed the match between Bahrain and last place Indonesia, who were without many of its most experienced players due to a dispute between the two competing Indonesian national leagues.[4] Going into the match, Bahrain needed at least a 9-goal victory over the Indonesians and a loss by group rivals Qatar in Tehran in order to advance to the Fourth Round of qualifying.

In just the third minute of play, referee El Haddad sent off the Indonesian keeper Samsidar and subsequently awarded the hosts Bahrainis the first of four penalties (Bahrain converted two of the four penalties). Bahrain won the match 10-0, a record victory for Bahrain and a record defeat for Indonesia, who were the first Asian side to play in a World Cup in 1938. Bahrain were up 9-0 by the 81st minute, and with Qatar simultaneously losing 2-1 to group leaders Iran, Bahrain at that point were set to advance to the final round of AFC qualification for the 2014 World Cup. However, Qatar equalized in the 86th minute, and the match in Tehran subsequently finished at 2-2, and Bahrain were thus eliminated from qualification.

The Bahrain-Indonesia match caused a scandal back in Indonesia. Indonesia caretaker manager Aji Santoso, who was sent to the stands by El Haddad during the defeat, said that Indonesia was "completely toyed with by (El Haddad)" in post-match remarks.[5] The Football Association of Indonesia lodged an official complaint to FIFA about El Haddad's performance in a match The Independent labelled as "suspicious".[6][7]


  1. ^ Min, Lee. (2011-09-03) Singapore captain says Lions were robbed by ref in China loss. Retrieved on 2012-03-01.
  2. ^ Football | FIFA World Cup™ | Singapore enraged by China defeat. Espnstar.Com. Retrieved on 2012-03-01.
  3. ^ Comprehensive local and international news and analysis. TODAYonline. Retrieved on 2012-03-01.
  4. ^ "Indonesian Football Team Humiliated in Historic Defeat". The Jakarta Globe. 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2011-03-01. 
  5. ^ "RI coach lashes out at referee after 10-0 defeat". The Jakarta Post. 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  6. ^ "PSSI Protes Wasit El Haddad ke FIFA" (in Indonesian). Kompas. 2012-03-01. 
  7. ^ "Bahrain's big win attracts suspicion". The Independent. 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2012-03-01.