Pierluigi Collina is an Italian former football referee who is widely popular as one of the most highly thought-of referees of his era and is considered to be the greatest football referee of all time. He was even named FIFA’s “Best Referee of the Year” six consecutive times. Collina has been serving as the Head of Referees for the Football Federation of Ukraine since 2010, and also as a member of the UEFA Referees Committee, and as Chairman of the FIFA referees committee.
Besides, he is also known by the nickname of Kojak because of the loss of all his facial hair giving him his distinctive bald appearance, which has given him more popularity over the years.
What is Pierluigi Collina Famous for?
- Famous as a former football referee.
- Known as the FIFA’s “Best Referee of the Year” for 6 years.
Where was Pierluigi Collina Born?
Pierluigi Collina was born on February 13, 1960, in Bologna, Italy. His birth name is Pierluigi Collina. His nationality is Italian. Collina belongs to the White ethnicity while Aquarius is his zodiac sign.
Pierluigi Collina was born as the son of her parents; Elia Collina(mother) and Luciana Collina(father). He grew up in his hometown in Bologna where he attended the University of Bologna, later graduating with a degree in economics in 1984.
He had an interest in football since his childhood that during his teenage years, he used to play as a central defender for a local team, however instead of pursuing his career as a player, he took a referee’s course in 1977. Within three years of his training, he was officiating at the highest level of regional matches, during which he also completed his compulsory military service.
Pierluigi Collina’s Career Highlights
- Pierluigi Collina started his career as a referee officiating at the high level of regional football matches.
- He soon progressed to the national third division, Serie C1 and Serie C2 in 1988, eventually to officiating Serie B and Serie A matches.
- In 1995, he was placed on FIFA’s Referees List.
- He got his break when he was allocated five matches at the 1996 Olympic Games.
- He also refereed the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final between Bayern Munich and Manchester United.
- In June 2002, Collina reached the pinnacle of his career, when he was chosen for the World Cup final, between Brazil and Germany.
- He refereed the 2004 UEFA Cup Final between Valencia and Marseille, which is also his last major international tournament.
- While his last international match was between Portugal – Slovakia, for a 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifier in Lisbon.
- Even after his resignation, he referees the Soccer Aid matches for charity in May 2006 and September 2008.
- Collina’s final competitive game was a Champions League qualifier between Everton and Villarreal on 24 August 2005.
- He also has been head of referees for the Football Federation of Ukraine since 2010.
- He is also a member of the UEFA Referees Committee and the Chairman of the FIFA referees committee.
- Besides, he appeared in cartoon form in George Michael’s video “Shoot the Dog” in 2002.
Awards and Honors
- IFFHS World’s Best Referee(for 6 consecutive years: 1998-2003)
- An honorary degree of Doctor of Science in 2004
- Serie A Referee of the Year(for 7 consecutive years: 1997-2003)
- Inducted to Italian Football Hall of Fame in 2011
Pierluigi Collina’s Wife
Pierluigi Collina is married to his only wife, Gianna Collina. He met his future wife in Versilia in 1988, and since then the couple has been living together for over 40 years now. They together have two daughters. Currently, Collina lives in Forte dei Marmi along with his family.
Also, he even had published his autobiography, “My Rules of the Game”(Le Mie Regole del Gioco) in 2003. In 2005, he had an appearance in an advert for the Vauxhall Vectra, which aired during the 2006 World Cup in the United Kingdom.
Besides, he is a lifelong supporter of Fortitudo Bologna, a basketball team.
Pierluigi Collina’s Net Worth
Pierluigi Collina has quite good earnings from his professional career as a referee. Having his career started in 1977, Collina has come a long way up becoming one of the greatest football referees of all time. With his immense hard work for decades, Collina has undoubtedly managed to amass a wealthy fortune through the several matches that he referred.
He also earns from several advertisement deals which he earned for his distinctive looks and his work. His net worth is estimated to be around $4 million.
Pierluigi Collina’s Height
Pierluigi Collina is a good-looking man with a well-maintained body physique in his 60s. He stands tall with a height of 6ft. 2inch.(1.88m) while his body weighs around 163 lbs(74 kg). His body measurement is around 34-35-35 inches with 6(US) as his dress size and 8(US) as his shoe size.
He has a fair complexion with bald hairlines and sparkling blue eyes. Back in the time of around 1980s, Collina contracted a severe form of alopecia, resulting in the permanent loss of all his facial hair, giving him his distinctive bald appearance and earning him the nickname Kojak.