Who is Edina Alves Batista, the referee for Al-Hilal – Inter Miami?

Who is Edina Alves Batista, the referee for Al-Hilal – Inter Miami?

Inter Miami’s pre-season tour across the globe is underway and the next stop on their journey is Saudi Arabia, where they are set to play two games in order to prepare for the upcoming 2024 MLS season. Lionel Messi and co. are going up against Al-Hilal in Riyadh on 29 January (KO 1:00 p.m. ET / 10:00 a.m. PT.).

Recent results for The Herons have not got the fans fizzing before the season kicks off, with a goalless draw against El Salvador coming before a slim, 1-0 loss to FC Dallas, thanks to an early Jesus Ferreira goal that was enough to sink the team in their new black and pink strip.

Al-Hilal – Inter Miami: Follow the live action here!

As for Al-Hilal, their fortunes are on the up after spending big bucks in the summer, with the side currently running away with the league in Saudi Arabia. Led by Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, the team also contains the likes of Bounou, Koulibaly, Ruben Neves and Mitrovic, as well as Neymar (although the Brazilian is not set to feature).

Who is Edina Alves Batista?

One Brazilian who will be present at the game is Edina Alves Batista, the referee for the game. The 43-year-old comes from Goioerê in Brazil and has been a FIFA-listed referee since 2016. While her normal line of work sees her referee games in the Brazilian women’s first division, she also has World Cup experience, taking charge of games at both France 2019 and Australia & New Zealand 2023, blowing the whistle in Spain’s triumph over Sweden in the semi-finals.

As for the men’s game, Alves also has plenty of experience as a pioneer in football. She was a referee at the 2020 FIFA Club World Cup, becoming the first woman to officiate at a senior men’s FIFA tournament. Shortly after, she became the first ever female referee of the men’s derby match between Corinthians and Palmeiras in Brazil.

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Edina Alves Batista took charge of the FIFA Club World Cup 5th place football match between Ulsan Hyundai and Al-Duhail.KARIM JAAFARAFP

Are Messi and Suárez going to play against Al-Hilal?

The ex-Barcelona duo have led the line far for Inter Miami as they look to find their goalscoring form ahead of the start of the season. However, things haven’t gone as smoothly as manager Tata Martino would have hoped, and the side are yet to score a single goal after 180 minutes of action.

Both Messi and Suárez are set to start once again against Al-Hilal as Martino looks to continue their fitness preparations ahead of a season in which they want to fight on all fronts for all possible trophies, but they will need to start finding the net sooner or later before the excitement from the fans turns into nerves and worry.


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