HUNGARIAN referee Viktor Kassai will take charge of France’s Group A clash with Romania in the opening match of Euro 2016.
The 40-year-old will handle the first game of the tournament on Friday, June 10, when the host nation face the Romanians at the Stade de France in Paris (KO 20:00 BST, live on ITV).
Kassai – who was the fourth official for last month’s Champions League Final in Italy – took charge of the 2011 showpiece between Barcelona and Manchester United at Wembley.
He was involved in controversy at Euro 2012 when failing to award co-hosts Ukraine a goal in their 1-0 defeat by England in the group stages when Marco Devic’s shot crossed the line before being cleared.
Although Uefa did not blame him for a judgement by his additional assistant referee behind the goal, Kassai and his team were sent home after the group phase.
The Tatabanya-based whistler will, therefore, be pleased that goal-line technology will be deployed at this summer’s European Championships in the form of Hawk-Eye.
LAST FIVE MAJOR INTERNATIONAL TOURNAMENT OPENERS:
World Cup 2014: Brazil 3-1 Croatia
Referee: Yuichi Nishimura (Japan)
Euro 2012: Poland 1-1 Greece
Referee: Carlos Velasco Carballo (Spain)
World Cup 2010: South Africa 1-1 Mexico
Referee: Ravshan Irmatov (Uzbekistan)
Euro 2008: Switzerland 0-1 Czech Republic
Referee: Roberto Rosetti (Italy)
World Cup 2006: Germany 4-2 Costa Rica
Referee: Horacio Elizondo (Argentina)
Kassai was not one of 25 referees selected for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil but oversaw four games at the 2010 tournament in South Africa, including Spain’s 1-0 win over Germany in the semi-finals.
The printing sales manager, whose father was also a referee, began officiating in the Hungarian top-flight in 1999 before receiving his Fifa badge four years later.
Kassai was solely a fourth official at Euro 2008 before taking charge of the Olympic Games men’s final in the same year.
He will be assisted in the French capital for the Euro 2016 opener by fellow countrymen Gyorgy Ring and Vencel Toth, with Tamas Bognar and Adam Farkas acting as additional assistants.
Bjorn Kuipers is the fourth official while fellow Dutchman Sander van Roekel will be the reserve assistant.
Kassai handled six Champions League games last season and the Europa League semi-final second leg when Liverpool beat 10-man Villarreal 3-0 at Anfield to reach the Basel final.