German referee Bibiana Steinhaus to take charge of Bundesliga matches from next season

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Last Updated: 22/05/17 10:02pm

Bibiana Steinhaus will step up to the Bundesliga next season

The Bundesliga will feature a female referee for the first time next season.

Bibiana Steinhaus, who refereed the 2011 Women's World Cup final, will step up to the top division next season after spending 10 years refereeing in Germany's second tier

Steinhaus, a police officer, is one of four new referees added to the Bundesliga list but is aware she will face greater scrutiny than fellow newcomers Martin Petersen, Sven Jablonski and Soren Storks.

"It has always been my dream to be a Bundesliga referee," the 38-year-old told the German Football Federation's official website.

"That this dream will come true naturally fills me with joy.

"Of course, I'm aware that I will be the first (female referee) in the Bundesliga and, especially at the beginning of the new season, will face particular attention from the public and the media."

German Football Federation president Reinhard Grindel added: "I would like to thank the referees' committee for their decision that consistent work and consistently good performance in the field of referees will be rewarded, irrespective of gender.

"Hopefully the first referee in the Bundesliga is an incentive for many young girls in our country to emulate her."