Former Category 1 and FIFA referee David Syme has died aged 76. He officiated over numerous Hibs and Hearts games during his 26-years in the game and was well respected by players and supporters.
He was admitted to the Scottish FA list of referees in 1968, reaching Category 1 in 1972 where he remained until his retirement in 1994.
A total of 26 years on the senior list of referees followed, during which he refereed two Scottish Cup Finals and two Scottish League Cup Finals.
David was a FIFA referee for 14 seasons from 1977 to 1991, receiving over 50 appointments including the Under-19 World Youth Championship Final in 1985 between Brazil and Spain.
Head of Referee Operations Crawford Allan said: “I remember watching David refereeing in the 1980’s and I’ll never forget when our paths crossed on a few occasions when I was a young, newly qualified referee. At that time David was a senior Category 1 referee and a huge inspiration for so many of us who had aspirations to become top-level officials.
“David helped lead some of the Scottish FA’s referee training classes at our summer conferences in the early 1990’s, a time when David was one of the most experienced referees in Europe and had the respect of so many.
“His record is testament to his standing as a referee throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s, when he was one of Europe’s top officials.
“His service to the Scottish game has been immense and I know I speak on behalf of the Scottish FA and the referee community in saying that David will be truly missed and fondly remembered.”
David Syme – summary of key matches
2 Scottish Cup Finals
1982-83: Aberdeen v. Rangers
1990-91: Motherwell v. Dundee United
2 Scottish League Cup Finals
1977-78: Rangers v. Celtic
1986-87: Rangers v. Celtic
Of the 50+ international appointments, the highlights included:
1985 FIFA Under-19 World Youth Championship Final Tournament and refereed the Final – Brazil v Spain.
1978 UEFA Under-19 Youth Team Finals
Refereed 5 FIFA World Cup Qualifying matches.
1985 UEFA’s Under-21 Championship, Semi-Final 2nd Leg match Hungary v Spain
1990 UEFA’s Under-21 Championship, Quarter Final tie Italy v Spain
Notable club international appointments:
1981-82 European Cup Semi-Final 2nd Leg: FC Bayern Munchen v CSKA Sofia
1988-89 UEFA Cup Semi-Final 2nd Leg: FC Bayern Munchen v Napoli
1990-91 European Cup Winners’ Cup Quarter-Final 1st Leg: FC Dynamo Kyiv v FC Barcelona