From Salesian School to World Cup

Sergio Román, Physical Education teacher at the Salesian School in Concepción, has been a FIFA international referee since 2007. He is one of the team of three referees from Chile who are participating in the Football World Cup – Brazil 2014. From his student days he always offered his services as referee. “I think that was the starting point of this passion,” he said in an interview at the office of Social Communication of the Salesians in Concepción.

This year he celebrates twenty-three years as a referee. For him, the World Cup is a significant professional success, which coincides with the year of his retirement from the field of play. “That’s why it is significant. After all this time, I am going to finish with the World Cup,” he said.

Sergio Román began his career as a referee at the Salesian school when he acted as referee in matches between friends. Later, when he began to study Physical Education at the University of Concepción, he became part of the Corps of Soccer Referees of the University. He took a course in refereeing in the “Asociación Nacional de Fútbol Profesional”.

When he qualified as a teacher, he had to combine two passions, teaching and refereeing. In 1996 he began refereeing in the second division in Chile. Seven years later he was promoted to refereeing five-a-side  international soccer,  and in 2007 he had great satisfaction when he was named an assistant international referee.

This allowed him to begin refereeing at tournaments such as the Copa Libertadores, the Copa Sudamericana and the qualifying games for the World Cup and the Confederations Cup. His refereeing earned excellent reviews from FIFA and opened the way for him to officiate at the World Cup Brazil 2014.

Sergio Román has always emphasized the support he received from the school in reconciling the two roles. “The first to support me was  our Director of Studies, the late Mario Lopez, who gave me the opportunity to move to international level. Without his support, I would have achieved nothing,” he said.

In April 2013 he was informed that his name had been included on the list of potential members of the team of referees from Chile for the World Cup.  Since then he has been in strict training, physical, psychological and technical, with the result that his name was confirmed in the final list published in January this year. Initially ten teams of three were submitted from South America, but only five of these were subsequently appointed by FIFA.

He joins Enrique Osses and Carlos Astrozaon the team of three from Chile. On 1 June they started a period of intense preparation at Rio de Janeiro, with fitness sessions in the morning and technical analysis in the afternoon.
Before leaving for Brazil, Sergio Román sent a message to his students: “Whatever activity you are involved in, always be  responsible and consistent. Dreams come true only if you do not give up. Keep going and try to do your very best.”

Source: Info ANS

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