Japanese official for FA Cup game


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The Independent Football

Japanese referee Masaaki Toma will become the first non-British official to take charge of an FA Cup fixture tomorrow.

Toma is in the UK as part of a referee exchange programme and has been selected to officiate the first round match between Brentford and Basingstoke.

As part of the programme Toma, who was referee when England played Mexico in a friendly last year, has already taken on a reserve team clash between Bolton and Sunderland as well as a Conference North fixture.

Chairman of the FA's Referees Committee, David Elleray, said: "Masaaki Toma is a world-class referee and his appointment shows that the FA Cup really does hold global appeal."