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History Made As Sapir Berman Becomes First Transgender To Officiate Football Match In Israel

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Israeli soccer referee, Sapir Berman had made history on Monday, after becoming the first transgender to officiate a football match in Israel’s Premier League.

History Made As Sapir Berman Becomes First Transgender To Officiate Football Match In Israel 7

Berman officiated a match between Beitar Jerusalem and Hapoel Haifa on Monday, May 3, 2021, after publicly announcing her transition in a press conference last week Tuesday.

During the press conference, the 26-year-old who was already a top referee in Israel’s leading soccer league, said she had always seen herself as a female, even at a young age.

“I was a successful man. Whether in the referees’ union or in school or with girls. But when I was alone, I was a woman. And I separated between these worlds because I understood that society will not accept me,” she said.

History Made As Sapir Berman Becomes First Transgender To Officiate Football Match In Israel 8

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She told reporters that Israeli football players have already been addressing her as a female in Hebrew language whenever they are talking to her.

“There are players that already speak to me as a female. They really feel that they want to somehow take part in this process and even speak to me when it’s not necessary and speak to me as a woman. So, thank you,” she said.

It was reported that a fan was spotted outside the stadium carrying a banner that hailed Berman as a “super woman, incredible, brave”.

History Made As Sapir Berman Becomes First Transgender To Officiate Football Match In Israel 9

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Israel Football Association tweeted: “This is the first step in a long and wonderful journey. Sapir, we are proud to do it with you.”

Berman is not the first transgender referee in the soccer world, as British referee Lucy Clark came out as transgender in 2018. But she is part of a small group of professional sports referees who have come out as transgender.

 

Meanwhile, a German woman, Imke Wubbenhorst, who coaches a male football team, has made a shocking revelation that she picks her team players based on their manhood size.

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