Antonio Mateu Lahoz

Antonio Mateu Lahoz

Antonio Mateu Lahoz
Quick Facts About Antonio Lahoz
Celebrated Name Antonio Mateu Lahoz
Age 47 years old
Nick Name Antonio Mateu Lahoz
Birth Name Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz
Birth Date 1977-03-12
Gender Male
Profession Football Referee
Birth Nation Spain
Place of Birth Algímia d'Alfara, Valencia
Nationality Spanish
Ethnicity Spanish-White
Religion Christian
Horoscope Pisces
Siblings Five
Net Worth $2 Million
Salary Thousand of Dollar
Source of Wealth Referee Career
Marital Status Married
Sexual Orientation Straight
Children Two
Height 5 feet 10.5 inches or 1.80 meters (180 centimeters)
Weight 74 kilograms
Hair Color Light Brown-Black
Eye Color Brown
Body Build/Type Athletic
Residence Valencia

Antonio Mateu Lahoz, a retired Spanish association football referee, had an illustrious career officiating La Liga matches from 2008 until his retirement in 2023. Renowned for his distinctive and talkative style, he garnered a reputation as the referee who added his own unique performance to the game. Lahoz's charismatic and sometimes unconventional approach to refereeing made him stand out among his peers. His career extended beyond domestic matches, as he also served as an international referee, officiating in several editions of the FIFA World Cup. However, after a successful and eventful tenure, Lahoz decided to hang up his whistle and retire from the world of refereeing, leaving behind a lasting legacy as one of the most colorful and recognizable figures in football officiating.

Who is Antonio Mateu Lahoz?

Antonio Mateu Lahoz is a former Spanish football referee. He had a career known for his distinctive style and unique performance on the field. He officiated La Liga matches, served as an international referee in FIFA World Cups, and retired in 2023, leaving a lasting legacy in the world of football industry. 

Antonio Mateu Lahoz, originally known as Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz, was born on March 12, 1977, making him 46 years old in 2023. He hails from Algímia d'Alfara, Valencia, Spain. Lahoz holds Spanish nationality and identifies with Spanish-White ethnicity. While he hasn't revealed his parents' names to the media, he shares a close bond with his mother. He has two brothers and three sisters, with his elder brother playing a significant role in inspiring his career as a football referee. Prior to pursuing refereeing, he worked as a physical education teacher, while his elder sister was also employed in the teaching profession.

Antonio Mateu Lahoz began his career as a referee in La Liga in 2008 and quickly established himself as one of the most prominent referees in Spain. However, his style and personality have made him a polarizing figure among Spanish football fans. Known for his personal flair, Mateu Lahoz has been criticized for allowing matches to descend into chaos by not reacting to play, instead drawing attention to himself through bizarre discussions with players and controversial decisions. Despite this, his approach has also found supporters, including former Real Madrid manager José Mourinho, who appreciated Mateu Lahoz's preference for talking to players rather than immediately disciplining them, finding it a refreshing difference. On the other hand, Barcelona manager Xavi had also praised his talkative nature during his playing days, while his predecessor Pep Guardiola reportedly had a different opinion.

Mateu Lahoz's refereeing career has seen him officiate high-profile matches, including the 2014 Copa del Rey Final between Real Madrid and Barcelona. In this match, he made headlines by booking Barcelona's Lionel Messi for dissent, only to realize later that Messi's protest was valid, resulting in a supposed apology. Controversial decisions and encounters with Barcelona continued in subsequent years. In 2018, after a match where Mateu Lahoz's decisions went against Barcelona, player Gerard Piqué had to be restrained when approaching the referee. In 2019, Mateu Lahoz showed two red cards within a minute, one to Ronald Araújo for a debatable professional foul and another straight red to Ousmane Dembélé for allegedly protesting the decision. The severity of the second card was criticized, especially considering Dembélé's language barrier and his ability to dissent.

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Antonio found himself at the center of attention on April 2, 2022, during a La Liga match between RCD Mallorca and Getafe. In a clip that went viral, Mateu Lahoz issued four yellow cards in a single second after allowing a confrontation to escalate between the teams. He brought two players from each side before him and displayed his cards in an arc, and later ran over to another player to issue a fifth card. Additionally, he awarded a penalty to Getafe for handball and sent off Mallorca defender Franco Russo, sparking further controversy. The most intriguing moment occurred at halftime when Mateu Lahoz approached Getafe striker Enes Ünal in the tunnel, stating that Ünal "owed him one." These incidents led to formal complaints from Mallorca to both La Liga and the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), resulting in Mateu Lahoz being sidelined for two matchdays.

Another memorable match involving Mateu Lahoz took place on December 31, 2022, during the Catalan derby between Barcelona and Espanyol. Already under scrutiny following his performance in a FIFA World Cup match, he drew further attention when he stopped play midway through the first half to talk to and kiss Barcelona manager Xavi. Throughout the match, Mateu Lahoz issued a staggering 15 yellow cards, including two to the Barcelona bench, and four red cards, with one red card overturned by VAR. The chaotic nature of the game and the high number of cards attracted criticism, with players and coaches expressing concerns about Mateu Lahoz's ability to defuse heated situations. Despite the controversy, Xavi, while acknowledging the loss of control, did not attribute the draw to Mateu Lahoz's refereeing. Following this match, Mateu Lahoz faced a two-week break from refereeing assignments, which coincided with his decision to retire at the end of the season. After a distinguished career of 288 matches, Mateu Lahoz bid farewell to La Liga on June 4, 2023. His retirement was met with a guard of honor and a standing ovation during his last match, marking the end of an eventful and controversial journey as one of Spain's most notable referees.

Internationally, from 2011 to 2023, Lahoz held the status of a FIFA-listed international referee, officiating in prestigious tournaments and matches. He served as a referee in the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil, the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and its qualifiers, the UEFA Euro 2020, and the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Notably, he refereed a quarter-final match of the 2018 UEFA Champions League between Manchester City and Liverpool, which saw Pep Guardiola, Manchester City's manager, engage in a heated exchange with Mateu Lahoz during half-time. Guardiola was later sent off in the second half after Mateu Lahoz disallowed a City goal. This incident sparked controversy, with Guardiola describing Mateu Lahoz as a "special" and "different" referee. Mateu Lahoz's refereeing style, characterized by allowing incidents between players to escalate and his decision-making, came under scrutiny. In the 2021 UEFA Champions League final between Manchester City and Chelsea, Mateu Lahoz drew attention again when he assisted an injured Antonio Rüdiger to stand up and immediately showed him a yellow card. During Qatar's home World Cup in 2022, he refereed Qatar's second match, where he made a brave decision by not awarding Qatar a penalty despite an incident in the box. In the quarter-final match between the Netherlands and Argentina, Mateu Lahoz issued a record 18 yellow cards, including two to Denzel Dumfries that resulted in his sending off after the match had concluded. Mateu Lahoz's use of cards received criticism for being both too harsh and too lenient, with other incidents in the match being overlooked. Emma Smith of BBC Sport described his performance as an "absolute shocker," noting the loss of control and players' discontent with his decisions. Argentina went on to win the World Cup, while CBS Sports reported that Mateu Lahoz was sent home after the match.

Antonio Mateu Lahoz retired from his referee career

How much is Antonio Mateu Lahoz Net Worth?

Antonio Mateu Lahoz, the retired football referee, has accumulated a net worth estimated at $2 million as of 2023. His earnings have been derived from various sources, including a base salary of $70,000 for his participation in the 2022 World Cup and an approximate match fee of $3,000 per game. While his exact annual salary remains undisclosed, it is evident that his professional career has provided him with a comfortable income. Mateu Lahoz leads a modest lifestyle, content with his earnings from the football industry, which serves as his primary source of wealth. Overall, he is satisfied with his financial situation and the rewards his career has brought him.

Who is Antonio Mateu Lahoz Wife?

Antonio Mateu Lahoz prefers to keep his personal life private, but it is known that he is a married man. He shares a loving and fulfilling relationship with his wife, although specific details such as her name and their wedding date remain undisclosed to the media. Together, they are proud parents to two children. Despite maintaining a low profile about his family life, it is evident that they enjoy a happy and contented life together. His sexual orientation is straight. 

How tall is Antonio Mateu Lahoz?

Antonio Mateu Lahoz stands tall at an impressive height of 5 feet 10.5 inches or 1.80 meters (180 centimeters) and has a well-maintained athletic physique, weighing around 74 kilograms. Renowned for his distinctive style, he often enters stadiums donning rock-star sunglasses, accompanied by a charming smile. While he is bald on the top of his head, he maintains a neat, short length of light brown-black hair on the sides and back. His captivating brown eyes complement his overall appearance. Interestingly, despite the option of a hair implant and offers to pay for it, Mateu Lahoz decided to embrace his natural look, as his children and wife expressed their fondness for his current appearance. He has got a healthy body as of now and he maintains his body a lot. 

5 Facts About Antonio Mateu Lahoz

1. Antonio was a physical education teacher before becoming a football referee

Before embarking on his career as a football referee, he worked as a physical education teacher. This profession provided him with a solid foundation in sports and fitness, which likely contributed to his understanding of the game and his ability to make quick decisions on the field. His experience as a teacher may have also honed his communication skills and his ability to handle high-pressure situations. Transitioning from the role of an educator to that of a referee, Lahoz brought his passion for sports and his knowledge of physical education into the realm of professional football officiating, making him a well-rounded and knowledgeable referee throughout his illustrious career.

2. He officiated in several editions of the FIFA World Cup 

Antonio Mateu Lahoz had the honor of officiating in multiple editions of the FIFA World Cup. His expertise as a football referee earned him the opportunity to showcase his skills and knowledge on the global stage. Lahoz's presence in these prestigious tournaments highlights his exceptional abilities and the recognition he received from the international football community. By officiating in the FIFA World Cup, Lahoz solidified his status as a respected referee on a global scale, leaving a lasting impact on the world's most celebrated football competition. From 2011 until 2023, Antonio Mateu Lahoz held the esteemed position of a FIFA-listed international referee, showcasing his talents on a global stage. Throughout his international career, he officiated in renowned tournaments and matches, including the qualifiers for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil, the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and its qualifiers, the UEFA Euro 2020, and the highly anticipated 2022 FIFA World Cup held in Qatar. His involvement in these prestigious events solidified his reputation as a top-notch referee in the international football community. 

Spanish Referee, Antonio Mateu Lahoz

3. He retired from refereeing in 2023

In 2023, Antonio Mateu Lahoz decided to retire from his career as a referee. After years of officiating matches at the highest level, Lahoz felt it was the right time to conclude this chapter of his life. His retirement marked the end of an era characterized by his distinctive and talkative style, as well as his ability to captivate audiences with his unique approach to refereeing. Lahoz's departure from the field of refereeing left a void that will be remembered and appreciated by fans and fellow officials alike, as he contributed greatly to the sport during his tenure. His retirement served as a moment to reflect on his remarkable achievements and the impact he had on the world of football officiating.

4. He said that refereeing is his happiness

Reflecting on the significance of his role, Mateu Lahoz expressed that refereeing brings him immense happiness. He emphasized the enjoyment he derives from the responsibility that comes with being a referee, stating that a crucial aspect of his job is to assist players and coaches. In a 2021 interview with UEFA, he explained that fostering a relaxed atmosphere enables effective communication and facilitates easier decision-making. For Mateu Lahoz, the satisfaction of his profession lies in the ability to contribute to the game and support the individuals involved in it.

5. He is currently residing in Valencia

Antonio Mateu Lahoz is currently living in Valencia, Spain, together with his wife and two children. As a private individual, he prefers to keep the details of his family life away from the public eye. Despite his public persona as a renowned football referee, Lahoz values the importance of privacy and maintains a low profile when it comes to his personal affairs. Valencia, with its vibrant culture and beautiful surroundings, serves as the home for Lahoz and his family, providing them with a comfortable and private space away from the spotlight of his refereeing career.