FACT-CHECK: Viral Posts Claim Ronaldo Was Among VAR Officials During Saudi Arabia’s Match Against Argentina. It Is Not True

A picture of Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal’s forward and skipper, trended yesterday as social media users including notable outlets claimed he was among Video Assistant Referees (VAR) during a match between Saudi Arabia and Argentina.

The world cup game took place in Lusail stadium in Qatar where Argentina was defeated by Saudi Arabia, ending their 36 games unbeaten in their opening game of the tournament.

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Following Saudi Arabia’s match against Argentina, BBC Sport posted a picture of Cristiano Ronaldo on Facebook, showing him in the VAR controlling room.

” So, that is who is in the VAR room for Saudi Arabia and Argentina,” the post which had generated over 600,00 reactions, 463 comments and over 1000 shares, read as of press time.

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Also, WikkiTimes ran a check on the verified page of Match of the Day on Twitter and a similar image of Ronaldo was also shared.

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“Just heard who’s on VAR today,” the page posted. The post had garnered over 387 comments, 1,017 shares and 308 reactions, as of press time.


WikkiTimes subjected the image to a fact-check using relevant tools. Though it is Ronaldo, but an individual can’t be a player and also be among referees at the same time.

Further search showed that the rferees officials in VAR control rooms as of yesterday were:

Video Assistant Referee: Pol van Boekel (NED)

Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Bastian Dankert (GER)

Offside Video Assistant Referee: Abdelhak Etchiali (ALG)

Support Video Assistant Referee: Ricardo de Burgos Bengoetxea (ESP)


The picture claiming that Ronaldo was in the VAR control room is misleading and false.


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