A REFEREE born in Bangor and from Llandudno took charge of the third-place play-off match at the Women’s World Cup.

Cheryl Foster oversaw Sweden’s 2-0 win against Australia in Brisbane on Saturday (August 19), in what was the fourth game she officiated at the tournament.

She became the first Welsh referee to officiate at a World Cup finals since the 1978 men’s tournament.

In June, Cheryl Foster also took charge of the Women’s Champions League final between Barcelona and Wolfsburg at PSV Stadium in Eindhoven.

Previously, she became the first Welsh woman to referee at a major tournament when she took charge of matches at Euro 2022, including the semi-final between Germany and France.


Bangor-born referee to officiate Women’s Champions League final

Due to the increasing popularity of women’s football, the Football Association of Wales has launched a referee academy for women and girls: the Adran Leagues Referee Academy.

This academy is a targeted programme that will recruit and develop referees to effectively service the increasingly popular women’s game with match officials through the Adran under-19s league.

It will be a development platform for both referees and players.

Janet Finch-Saunders, Aberconwy MS, said: “It has been an excellent year for Cheryl, representing Wales as a referee at the Women’s World Cup, and officiating the UEFA Women’s Champions League final!

“Cheryl is a fantastic role model for young football fans, and I am proud that such a global inspiration has come from North Wales. To be representing Wales at this level is a very impressive achievement.

“I am so pleased to hear that the Welsh FA are now focusing on the importance of including women in football at all levels.

“We currently only have 50 female referees in the whole of Wales. Having visible role models, like Cheryl, at such a high-level is key to changing this.

“With over 100 women and girls signed up to the Adran Leagues Referee Academy induction workshops so far, I look forward to seeing many more Welsh referees officiating matches at all levels in years to come.”

Foster enjoyed a successful playing career as a forward which included nine years with Liverpool, playing for the club at the start of England's FA Women's Super League.

Her former clubs also included Bangor City and St. Francis.

She made her senior international debut for Wales in 1997, and in 2009, became the all-time record appearance holder for Wales, eventually winning 63 caps in 14 years.

Since retiring in 2013, she has been an international referee since 2015, as well as teaching at The Bishops' Blue Coat Church of England High School in Chester.