Lale Orta

Lale Orta (born 1960) is a Turkish former football player, coach, sports commentator and referee. She was Turkey's first ever FIFA listed woman referee. Currently, she is an academic in the field of sports science.[1]

Lale Orta
Born (1960-01-01) January 1, 1960
İstanbul, Turkey
Other occupation University lecturer
Years League Role
1990–98 A2 Ligi referee
1990-04 TFF Third League referee
1996-04 TFF Second League referee
1996-04 TFF First League referee
1997-01 Turkish Cup referee
1999-04 Süper Lig referee
2000–02 Women's First League referee
Years League Role
2002–07 UEFA Women's Champions League referee

Personal life

Lale Orta was born 1960 in Istanbul.[2] Following her primary and secondary education in schools at Aksaray, Cibali and Bakırköy, she studied Accounting and Finance at Marmara University graduating in 1986. She continued her higher education in Sport management at the same university and earned a Master's degree in 1993. She received a Ph.D. degree with a thesis on "An Analytical Approach over the Football Organizations in Turkey and the World" (Turkish: "Dünyada ve Türkiye'de futbol organizasyonları üzerine analitik bir yaklaşım") at her alma mater in 2002.[2][3][4] [5]

Between 1998 and 2003, Orta served as lecturer at the Istanbul Technical University. From 2003[6] to 2009, she taught at Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University.[2] Since 2009, she is assistant professor and head of Sports Science Department at Okan University in Istanbul.[3][7]

Lale Orta is married to film and stage actor Ahmet Orta.[4][8]

Sports career

Player and coach

Between 1976 and 1989, she played football as goalkeeper in Dostluk Spor, the first women's football team of Turkey, and served as its captain. She became later the country's first female certified football coach, and worked as such for Dostluk Spor and the Turkey women's national football team.[2][3][8]


Orta began her referee career as an assistant referee in a match of the Turkish reserve team league, called A2 Ligi, on September 10, 1990. She made her debut as a referee in the same league on October 7, 1990. She was then promoted to officiate in the TFF Third League on October 27, 1990 and in the TFF Second League on January 28, 1996. Orta was appointed to supervise the highest-level Turkish league competitions in the Süper Lig for the first time in the match Sakaryaspor against MKE Ankaragücü on May 29, 1999.[8] She served as referee in the Turkish Women's First Football League debuting on April 9, 2000. After officiating more than 1,500 amateur and professional football matches including 60 international in various competitions,[2][3] she retired from active referee career in domestic football after her last match on December 5, 2004.[9] The Turkish Football Federation named her official observer for the Super Lig matches with effect of the 2007–08 season.[10]

In 1995, she received the FIFA badge as one of the first 54 women referees from 27 countries in the world. In this capacity, she officiated international matches in eleven years. Orta was named a "UEFA Elite Referee" among 17 European referees in 2003. On November 28, 2002, Orta supervised the quarter-finals match between Arsenal Ladies and CSK VVS Samara at the 2002–03 UEFA Women's Cup held in St Albans England.[11] She oversaw the preliminary round match between Russia and France at the 2005 UEFA Women's Championship qualification in Moscow, Russia on May 16, 2004[12] and the final match of 2005 UEFA Women's Cup between the German 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam and the Swedish Djurgårdens IF Dam on May 15, 2005.[3] Due to 45-years of age limit for referees set by the FIFA, Orta's international referee career ended after the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup qualification (UEFA) match she officiated between the national women's teams of Spain and Belgium played in Madrid, Spain on November 5, 2005.[2] For the 2007–08 UEFA Women's Cup semifinal second-leg match between the Italian A.S.D. C.F. Bardolino Verona and the German 1. FFC Frankfurt teams played in Verona, Italy on April 5, 2008, she served as the official observer.[13]



  1. Küçük, Mustafa (2013-02-08). "Yıl 2013: Kadının adı hâlâ yok!". Hürriyet (in Turkish). Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  2. "Lale Orta hakemliği bıraktı". Hürriyet (in Turkish). 2005-11-26. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  3. "Lale Orta Kimdir?" (in Turkish). Futbol Ekonomisi & Endüstriyel Futbol. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  4. "Lale Orta'ya "doktor" unvanı". NTV-MSNBC (in Turkish). 2002-01-16. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  5. "Lale Orta "doktor" oldu". Hürriyet (in Turkish). 2002-01-16. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  6. "Lale Orta artık doçent". Radikal (in Turkish). 2003-08-15. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  7. "Eski Hakem Lale Orta, Okan Üniversitesi'nin Spor Bilimleri Bölümü'nün Başına Getirildi". Son Dakika (in Turkish). 2009-08-11. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  8. Erdem, Aynur (2005-12-17). "Şike yapmam için evime bile geldiler". Sabah (in Turkish). Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  9. "Referee Details – Lale Orta". Türkiye Futbol Federasyonu. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  10. "Lale Orta'dan yeni bir ilk". Hürriyet (in Turkish). 2007-07-25. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  11. "UEFA Club Championship (Women) 2002/03 – Details Knock-Out Phase". Retrieved 2013-10-16.
  12. "Lale Orta'ya geçer not". Radikal (in Turkish). 2004-05-24. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  13. "UEFA'dan Lale Orta'ya görev". Hürriyet (in Turkish). 2008-04-01. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  14. "Factsheet Women In The Olympic Movement – March 2013" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
  15. "Lale Orta'ya büyük onur". Hürriyet (in Turkish). 2002-03-29. Retrieved 2013-10-12.
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