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German soccer player makes sexist comment, is sentenced to referee girls' soccer match

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Joachim Sielski/Getty Images

A German soccer team found a fitting punishment after one of its players made a sexist comment to a Bundesliga referee: he was ordered to referee a girls' soccer match.

Karem Demirbay, who is on loan to Fortuna Düsseldorf from Hamburg, reportedly told a female referee that "women have no place in men’s football" as he was being sent off during a match following a second yellow card. He was given a three-match ban by the league for the comments, and another two games under probation.

Fortuna Düsseldorf went further, asking the player to officiate a local girls' youth match.

Demirbay later called the referee, Bibiana Steinhaus, to apologize. In a statement, he said, "That comment does not reflect my opinion of women," which, given its unambiguity, suggests that his actual opinion of women is even worse.

The team later posted photos of the 22-year-old midfielder standing by the sideline of the girls' match on Saturday with a neon whistle and looking decidedly unenthusiastic.