England vs USA referee Jesus Valenzuela makes his World Cup debut in Qatar


    Palmeiras v Athletico Paranaense - CONMEBOL Recopa Sudamericana 2022
    Jesus Valenzuela takes charge of England vs USA on Friday night (Picture: Getty Images)

    Venezuela will be represented at the Qatar World Cup by referee Jesus Valenzuela, who takes charge of England vs USA on Friday night in Group B.

    It is the 39-year-old’s first game at this World Cup, or any edition of the tournament, arriving from the Venezuelan Primera Division.

    He has not been shy in dishing out cards in recent games back in South America, with nine red cards shown in his last 10 matches.

    In that same period of time, Valenzuela has shown 60 yellow cards, so we shouldn’t be too surprised if there are a few bookings in the England vs USA clash.

    He was involved in World Cup qualifiers in South America, last taking charge of an international game when Paraguay beat Ecuador 3-1 in March this year.

    His readiness with his cards is not restricted to club football as he showed seven yellows and a red as Paraguay won 3-1.

    FBL-LIBERTADORES-BARCELONA-BOTAFOGO
    Valenzuela has become one of South America’s best referees (Picture: Getty Images)

    England avoided any bookings in their World Cup opener against Iran, with Morteza Pouraliganji and Alireza Jahanbakhsh the only players to be shown yellow cards in that match.

    USA cannot say the same after their 1-1 draw with Wales earlier this week, with Tim Ream, Sergino Dest, Weston McKennie and Kellyn Acosta all booked.

    A second booking for any of those players would mean they would miss the final game in the group against Iran, which will be crucial in their hopes to qualify for the knockout stages.

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