Ref Clattenburg Quits England For Saudi Arabia


English referee Mark Clattenburg will leave his job as a Premier League official to become Saudi Arabia's new head of referees, it has been reported by various outlets in England.


The sometimes controversial Clattenburg, 41, was in charge of the Euro 2016 final, the Champions League final and the FA Cup final last season.


Howard Webb, another ex-Premier League official, resigned as Saudi Arabia's head of refereeing 11 days ago.


Clattenburg is expected to leave before the next Premier League fixtures.


The Englishman's new post will involve working with Saudi referees to improve performance and professionalise the setup.


He is also expected to handle some league games after signing a one-year rolling contract.


Clattenburg said on the Saudi Football Federation's Twitter page on Thursday: "This is an important move forward. We have professional referees in the country that I am leaving which has been a big positive.


"One thing I'd like to do is work with the refereeing team and the president to make this happen so that it will be successful for many, many years to come."


The Premier League's referee body, Professional Game Match Officials Limited, said he had been "a great asset" and "an inspiration to those who want to get into refereeing".


Its statement added: "We understand this is an exciting opportunity for Mark, and it further underlines the high esteem for English match officials throughout the world game."

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