Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Referee Howard Webb receives honorary degree

Howard Web after receiving his honorary degree
Image caption Mr Webb started refereeing children's games 21 years ago

World Cup final referee Howard Webb has received an honorary degree for his services to sport.

Sheffield Hallam University bestowed the honour on him in a ceremony at Sheffield City Hall.

Mr Webb became the first Englishman since 1974 to referee a World Cup final, officiating in Spain's 1-0 win over Holland in South Africa last year.

He is currently on a five-year break from South Yorkshire Police, where he is a sergeant.

Mental coaching

Mr Webb said the degree was not something that he expected when he began refereeing, starting with an under-10s game at Orgreave, near Rotherham, 21 years ago.

The referee, who left school at the age of 17, said he was surprised to be honoured alongside the other students that had "worked so hard".

Mr Webb received altitude training and mental coaching from the university's psychologists and physiotherapists before the 2010 World Cup.

Earlier this year he received an MBE for services to football.

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